The purpose of the Jobs Plus program is to develop locally-based, job-driven approaches that increase earnings and advance employment outcomes through work readiness, employer linkages, job placement, educational advancement, technology skills, and financial literacy for residents of public housing. The place-based Jobs Plus program addresses poverty among public housing residents by incentivizing and enabling employment through earned income disregards for working families and a set of services designed to support work including employer linkages, job placement and counseling, educational advancement, and financial counseling. Ideally, these incentives will saturate the target developments, building a culture of work and making working families the norm.
The Jobs Plus program consists of the following three core components:
- Employment-Related Services
- Financial Incentives – Jobs Plus Earned Income Disregard (JPEID)
- Community Supports for Work
Applicants are encouraged to develop key partnerships to connect participants with any other needed services to remove barriers to work. An Individualized Training and Services Plan (ITSP) should be developed for each participant to establish goals and service strategies, and to track progress.
Program services provided on-site should include, but need not be limited to, the following:
- Career exploration/job readiness workshops
- Job search and job placement assistance
- Entrepreneurship workshops
- Work experience including on-the-job training, internships, pre-apprenticeships and Registered Apprenticeships (HUD encourages opportunities for residents to be paid while training)
- Facilitated connections to education and training opportunities
- Rapid re-employment if job loss occurs
- Proactive post-placement job retention support and career advancement coaching
- Access to computers, phones, fax, and copy machines and other supplies for participants’ employment-related uses and adequate training on how to use these technologies.
To facilitate these employment services, applicants may consider having dedicated on-site workforce system staff to perform job developer and case manager functions. Job developers work directly with the business community to identify and create employment opportunities and act as liaisons with local employment agencies. Case managers work one-on-one with participants to guide them through the employment process and help them achieve employment related goals.
Financial Incentives – Jobs Plus Earned Income Disregard (JPEID): Successful applicants must also implement a financial incentive for program participants, known as the Jobs Plus Earned Income Disregard (JPEID). This component will neutralize any rent increase due to rising earned income for Jobs Plus participants, removing a major disincentive to employment. Rent incentives offered through JPEID will be reimbursed to the PHA via Jobs Plus appropriations, and should be included in the program budget. Any other compensation to the PHA for lost rent revenues, such as by the standard EID calculation in the Operating Fund, will be offset manually to prevent overpayment of HUD funds to grant recipients. Further guidance will be available at the time of the award.
Community Supports for Work: Successful applicants will incorporate a robust engagement strategy for involving the residents in the targeted development and creating a working community. Engagement is more than signing up – sustained involvement in the program leading to residents' ownership of their own growth and experiences, and that of peers, will yield continued benefits for both participants and future residents of the development beyond the grant period. Program outreach should be directed towards residents at all points along the employment spectrum – from unemployed individuals with no work history to working, underemployed families with substantial work history. The application narrative should include strategies to target this wide range of potential participants, as well as strategies for retention.
Eligibility: Eligible applicants are Public Housing Authorities that operate one or more public housing developments that meet the criteria outlined in this notice. PHAs that received a Jobs Plus program grant in 2014, 2015 or 2016 are not eligible for 2017 grant funds. Federally designated tribes and tribally designated housing entities are not eligible entities under this award.