V. Supportive Housing Program (Statute: 305 ILCS 5/12-4.5)

  1. A. Purpose and Terminology
  2. B. Policies and Procedures
  3. C. Contracts and Amendment Procedures
  4. D. Program Budget
  5. E. Provider Responsibilities
  6. F. Supportive Housing Program Deliverables
  7. G. Allowable/Unallowable Costs
  8. H. Contract Budget Line Item Transfers
  9. I. Program Monitoring

A. Purpose and Terminology

The Supportive Housing Program (SHP) provides supportive services which are delivered in conjunction with permanent and transitional housing, to low-income individuals and families who are formerly homeless or at risk of becoming homeless. Supportive services help families and individuals in the network of programs that can assist them to return to self-sufficiency. The supportive services provided by the Supportive Housing Program are those deemed necessary to move people to self-sufficiency. Terminology used in the Supportive Housing Program include the following:

Advocacy:  Intervening on behalf of participants to assist in the receipt and use of services.

Alcohol Abuse:   Providing or arranging services for participants to AA (Alcoholics Anonymous) or other programs to address alcohol abuse.

Case Management:  Coordinating the acquisition, delivery and use of supportive services. Case management must include individual assessments that are used to develop individual service plans.

Child Care: Providing or arranging child care services.

Children's Services: Providing or arranging services for child-specific services, such as child abuse counseling or preschool programs.

Counseling:  Providing or arranging for individual or group counseling to alleviate physical abuse, mental health issues, substance abuse, and/or familial obstacles that are preventing a return to self-sufficiency. Financial, and life skills counseling services are also eligible.

Domestic Violence: Providing or arranging services for victims of domestic violence.

Education:  Providing or arranging services for participants to complete a course of study leading to a diploma or specific skill certificate.

Employment Services:  Providing or arranging services for participants to complete job preparation and/or secure job interviews/employment. This may include acquiring special tools or clothing to perform the job in which the participant is placed or received training.

English as a Second Language:  English language services available to persons who seek to improve their English language skills.

Follow-Up:  Assessing the need for and/or providing additional services upon completion of and discharge from the program.

Health/Dental:  Providing or arranging services for participants and assuring use of needed medical and/or dental services.

HIV/AIDS: Supportive services related to the needs of participants diagnosed with HIV/AIDS.

Housing/Location Inspection: Locating and/or initial inspection of rental property on behalf of participants to assure that the housing is decent and adequate for the household and meets general health and safety standards prior to occupancy by the program participant.

Legal Service Referrals: Referrals to any legal services which may be needed by participants.

Mental Health Services:  Providing or arranging services that address serious and persistent mental disabilities.

Outreach:  Locating and contacting homeless persons in the community and informing them of available services.

Permanent Housing:  Long term community-based housing which enables the special needs population to live as independently as possible in a permanent setting.

Substance Abuse Services:  Providing or arranging services for participants to NA (Narcotics Anonymous) or other programs to address substance abuse issues.

Supportive Housing:  Permanent or transitional housing with access to the needed supportive services which enable special needs populations to live as independently as possible. 

Transitional Housing:  Providing temporary residence for a period not to exceed 24 months, with access to food and supportive services.

Transportation: Transporting or purchasing transportation services, such as bus tokens or taxi fares, for participants to acquire medical care, public assistance, education, training and other services not provided on site.

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B. Policies and Procedures

  1. Funding:  All funds awarded to a Provider must be obligated by the end of the agreement period and expended by the end of the lapse period. Funding is based upon the submittal and acceptance of an annual Funding Application. Funding Applications are evaluated on the basis of provider experience, administrative capacity, facility capacity, need in the geographical area, program service plans and budget.

    Typically, Funding Applications are distributed in the spring of each year with contracts distributed in June. The program funding typically runs from July 1 to June 30. The Illinois Department of Human Services determines which Funding Applications will be funded and the funding amounts.

  2. Funding Applications for Supportive Housing:  An annual electronic Funding Application is submitted by the provider each fiscal year. The following items are required for the Supportive Housing Program in the web-based Funding Application:
    1. Legal Name of Provider.
    2. Project Plan Narrative.
    3. Copy of current fire/safety inspection. All facilities must meet local health and safety code requirements, if applicable.
    4. The projected number of participants to be served, characteristics, eligibility requirements. 
    5. The number of units.
    6. Packet containing all intake/assessment forms.
    7. Program plan forms and all other forms that are used to assist program participants.
    8. Provider Name and Address: Name and address of organization on the contract.
    9. Funding Application contract total, Budget, Funding Sources, Identification of Direct Service Personnel.
    10. The Funding Application must contain the type of entity governing the provider (i.e., County, Public Housing Authority, Board of Directors).
    11. A summary of the supportive services.
    12. The population served.
    13. An explanation of the staffing pattern and hours of operation.
    14. County or counties in which services are delivered.
    15. Federal Employer ID Number (FEIN): 9 digits.
    16. Contact Person for the program.
    17. Telephone number of the contact.
    18. E-mail address of contact person.
    19. Type(s) of Program: Transitional Housing or Permanent Housing.
    20. Proposed Budget Summary, Personnel, Detail Summary and Program Funding Sources.
    21. Emergency Phone Numbers.
    22. Verification of 25% matching.
    23. Service Funds Plan.
    24. Identify Sub-contractors, if applicable.
  3. Board of Directors:  Each provider is required to submit names of board members and chief officers who oversee the agency. The provider must maintain a current list of the board members and their terms of office and a list of phone numbers and email addresses of the board members. The board must meet at least quarterly and maintain meeting minutes. The provider must maintain a policy on conflict of interest for board of director's members.
  4. 501(c)(3):  If the provider is not a governmental entity, the provider must be a federally tax exempt, non-profit agency legally authorized to operate in the State of Illinois with a Not-for-Profit Corporation Charter from the Illinois Secretary of State and verification from the Internal Revenue Service of exemption from federal income tax liability under the applicable Section 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code. Each provider must submit documentation of not-for-profit status and their 501(c)(3) status. Each provider must certify that it complies with all provisions of the Federal Internal Revenue Code, the Illinois Revenue Act, and all rules promulgated thereunder, including withholding provisions and timely deposits of employee taxes and unemployment insurance taxes. Also, an annual report must be on file with the Secretary of State that the provider is a not-for-profit provider. This report will be sent by the Secretary of State to each provider's registered agent 45 to 60 days in advance of the date of the provider's incorporation. A provider can contact the Secretary of State Office/Annual Report Section at (217) 782-6961 with any questions or conflict resolutions.
  5. Records:  The provider must maintain written policies and procedures regarding its fiscal activities, including but not limited to, payroll, purchasing, cash management, relevant fee schedules, contracts and risk management. The provider must submit and have on file a copy of their Annual Report to the Internal Revenue Service Form 990 and an Annual Report to the Attorney General Form AG 990. The provider must show proof that its governing body has approved a budget at least annually. All fiscal records are to be maintained for at least five years after the end of the fiscal year to which they relate. Failure to maintain adequate records to document the expenditure of IDHS funds creates a presumption in favor of the Department for recovery of the funds. The provider must have on file the by-laws, policies and procedures and a current organization chart. The provider must maintain policies concerning the hiring, termination, evaluation and discipline of staff. Also, the provider must have policies on non-discrimination in hiring, employment, sexual harassment as well as written job descriptions of employee's duties and responsibilities.
  6. Participant Information and Data:  Each agency must maintain participant files that document supportive services, case management, intake, assessment, outcomes and employment for a period not less than 5 years. Each agency is required to submit quarterly participant data regarding demographics, population and services. Providers must report quarterly on the number and characteristics of the people served and the services provided. The reports include information on the demographic characteristics of the participant, the causes of homelessness and conditions or problems of each participant such as substance abuse. The Illinois Department of Human Services provides a web-based reporting system for required quarterly reporting.
  7. Participant Intake and Assessment Forms:  Each provider is required to submit annually for approval by IDHS all participant intake forms and assessment forms as prescribed in the Funding Application. All participants will have a completed intake and assessment done upon entry into the program.
  8. Centralized Repository Vault (CRV):  Each provider is required to upload appropriate documents to the CRV.
  9. Program Requirements:  Each agency must provide at least one type of supportive housing;  permanent housing coupled with supportive services, or transitional housing (not to exceed 24 months) coupled with supportive services. All agencies must provide open access to the program for everyone on a non-discriminatory basis. Access to a computer for electronic reporting to IDHS is required. Participant fees for supportive services are unallowable. Participant rent payments are restricted to HUD supportive housing rent requirement (i.e., 30% of income).

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C. Contracts and Amendment Procedures

  1. Contract Procedures and Approvals:  Providers to be awarded funding will be notified, in writing, of annual contract award submittal dates and procedures for contracting.
  2. Amendment, Submittals and Approvals:  If necessary, a Provider may file a modification to the Funding Application. Modifications or amendments to the funding and services plan must be submitted by the provider, in writing, and are subject to approval by the Illinois Department of Human Services, Bureau of Basic Supports. All sub-contracts or pass-through funding agreements must meet all terms and conditions of the IDHS Community Services Agreement and must be approved by IDHS prior to entering into any sub-contractual or pass-through funding arrangement.

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D. Program Budget

  1. Annual Supportive Housing Program Budget: The annual program budget for Supportive Housing establishes how funds will be used in program implementation during the fiscal year. At least eighty-five percent (85%) must be used for direct participant services. Direct service costs are those directly related to case management and provision of services to participants, such as staff salaries for assessment, training and counseling. Direct Program costs cannot exceed fifteen percent (15%) of the grant. Providers are required to identify the relevant funding sources and the percent of funding used in each budget category. Providers are required to isolate and track all IDHS funds by program and budget line item.
  2. Financial Management System:  Providers must have an established financial management system which provides complete, separate, and accurate accountability of funds. The provider's accounting system must be well-maintained, up to date, and provide the following original documentation:
    1. Bank reconciliations
    2. Trial balance
    3. Separate identification of program expenses in a general ledger
    4. Complete accountability of all obligations, payments, and reimbursements
    5. Justification of allocations
    6. Written administrative and accounting procedures
    7. Segregation of duties for internal control
    8. Maintain an accounting system that isolates IDHS funds and allows tracking of IDHS expenditures. All funds awarded to an agency must be obligated by the end of the contract period and expended by the end of the lapse period.
  3. Budget Revisions - Amendment Process:
    1. Letters of increase or decrease; The provider will be notified by a computer-generated email of the Department's intent to increase or decrease funding to an existing contract.
    2. Formal amendments; An agreement executed by the provider and IDHS constitutes a formal amendment. The following is required for a formal amendment to be processed:
      1. Adding new program services: An amendment to add a new program service must contain a detailed summary of services to be provided under the amended contract and the method of payment.
      2. Extending the service date of the contract: An amendment to extend the service date of the contract must contain the following information: Agreement number as it appears on the original contract; Provider name; Clause stating the new term; signatures of the Provider and the Secretary of the Illinois Department of Human Services.
      3. Extending the service dates of an existing program: An amendment to extend the service dates of a specific program in the existing contract and must contain the following information: agreement number as it appears on the original contract; provider name; clause stating the new term of the agreement; signatures of the Provider and the Secretary of the Illinois Department of Human Services.
      4. Changing the language within an existing program attachment only: An amendment to change the language of a specific program attachment of an existing contract must contain the following information: Agreement number as it appears on the original contract; Provider name; clause(s) stating the new language of the agreement; signatures of the Provider and the Secretary of the Illinois Department of Human Services.
  4. Fiscal Audits:  If deemed necessary, a program and fiscal audit will be conducted by the IDHS Office of Contract Administration.
  5. Match Requirements:  All contracts approved for funding under the Supportive Housing Program must be matched by at least 25% from other sources. Of the 25% match, at least one-half must be matched with cash ( e.g., fund raising, donations, ESG, United Way, HUD, FEMA). The remaining one-half may be matched with cash, in-kind services or property from sources other than the funds granted through the Supportive Housing Program. Volunteer services at $10.00 per hour and other in-kind contributions may be applied toward meeting the match requirement. If a Provider chooses to apply volunteer services and in-kind contributions toward the match requirement, the minimum records to document the contributions are:
    1. For volunteer services, the name and address of the volunteer and documentation of the dates, hours of service, and services provided.
    2. For contribution of personal or real property, whether in title or in usage, a written description of the property and the value of the property. The contribution will be valued at fair market value at the time of the contribution.
  6. Recovery:  The Office of Contract Administration (OCA) is responsible for financial reconciliation and financial recovery of unspent funds. As part of the funds recovery procedure, the Office of Contract Administration will send to each provider an "Informal Notice" letter containing the state fiscal year, the provider's name, and FEIN number and the amount of IDHS funds provided to each provider. The letter will also include a Grant Reconciliation Report to be completed by each provider. The provider will have fifteen days from the receipt of the informal notice to request, in writing, an informal hearing on lapsed funds or a plan of correction dealing with other violations. If the informal hearing does not result in a resolution of the lapsed funds, a "Formal Notice to Recover Lapsed Funds" letter will be sent by registered mail to the provider. The provider will then have thirty-five days to request, in writing, a Formal Hearing. At the end of thirty-five days, if no request has been received, the OCA may proceed to recover the amount of funds. If the provider does not have an upcoming fiscal year contract from which to deduct the lapsed funds owed, the Bureau of Collections will establish a collection account in the name of the provider. The Bureau of Collections will generate an invoice and mail it to the provider for payment. The provider will then receive monthly billing statements. The debt may also be referred by the IDHS to the Attorney General's Office if the debt remains unpaid for one year.
  7. Program Payments:  Payments for the Supportive Housing Program will be made as prescribed by IDHS.
    IDHS reserves the right to advance additional funds to the agency beyond the prescribed method when it is in the best interest of the provider to do so.

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E. Provider Responsibilities

The provider must submit, on a timely basis, complete and accurate fiscal and participant service reports. Access to a computer is required for electronic reporting to IDHS.  Unless otherwise notified in writing by the IDHS, Supportive Housing providers are required to submit quarterly participant service and fiscal reports via the web-based reporting system not later than 20 days after the end of each state fiscal quarter. The State of Illinois fiscal year operates from July 1 to June 30 each year. Participant service reports provide details as to the number and characteristics of the participants and the services provided. Fiscal reports provide detailed line item expenditures documented for each quarter. The client service reports and fiscal reports must be submitted quarterly and are due on October 20, January 20, April 20, and July 20.

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F. Supportive Housing Program Deliverables

All deliverables will be verified by on-site monitoring visits, through review of data in the required web-based reporting system or by other means as the Department deems necessary.

  • All participants are provided with case management services, counseling services, and advocacy services within five days of admittance to the program. All participants must also have documented access, when applicable, to other supportive services.  The outcome will be verified through on-site field monitoring, quarterly reporting, and/or information submitted in the Annual Funding Application.
  • All participants will have a service plan developed for implementation within the first week of admittance to the program. The individual service plan must detail monthly outcomes as well as ongoing goals to be accomplished by the participants with the assistance of the provider. The outcome will be verified through on-site field monitoring, quarterly reporting and/or by information submitted in the Annual Funding Application.
  • All participants will have access to case management services outside of normal business hours of operation including, but not limited to, evening case management service hours. The outcome will be verified through on-site field monitoring, quarterly reporting, and/or through information submitted in the Annual Funding Application.
  • All participants will have a completed intake and assessment done upon entry into the program.  Providers must submit all intake and assessment forms to IDHS annually for approval as required attachments to the provider's annual Funding Application. The outcome will be verified through on-site field monitoring, quarterly reporting, and/or through information submitted in the Annual Funding Application.
  • All progress and supportive services for participants will be tracked and progress reported within each participant's case file that includes, at a minimum, a record of the participant's supportive services, case management, progress, and benefit assistance. The outcome will be verified through on-site field monitoring, the web-based reporting system, and/or through information submitted in the Annual Funding Application.
  • All providers will have a community outreach plan which includes a detailed description for notifying the community of the program, hours of operation, and admittance/eligibility requirements into the program(s) they administer for IDHS.  This plan must include outreach to the other community service agencies, the local FCRC, and other outreach entities.  IDHS must be advised of any publication and distribution of flyers, printed materials, and brochures that are part of the IDHS funded program(s).  The outcome will be verified through on-site field monitoring, or through information submitted in the Annual Funding Application.
  • All providers will have a written agreement or Memorandum of Understanding for referrals to other social service agencies. The agreement or memorandum must include: 
    • a description of the type(s) of service provided;
    • a description detailing how referrals will be handled by each entity; and
    • a description of any follow-up actions.
      The outcome will be verified through on-site field monitoring, and/or Annual Funding Plan review.
  • All providers will have a referral process that assists program participants with enrollment into public benefit programs such as TANF, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as Food Stamps), All Kids, medical assistance, disability assistance, as well as other resources that address the needs of the program participants. The outcome will be verified through on-site field monitoring, quarterly reporting, and/or through information submitted in the Annual Funding Application.
  • All providers will have the ability to download the IDHS SNAP application and distribute it to eligible households. The outcome will be verified through on-site field monitoring and the web-based reporting system.
  • All providers will accurately report outcomes and submit reports to IDHS within the designated time frames utilizing the web-based reporting system. The outcome will be verified through on-site field monitoring, and/or quarterly reporting.

The following projected data is included in the provider's Funding Application:

  1. the projected, unduplicated number of participants to be served during the fiscal year; and
  2. the projected, unduplicated number of households expected to be served during the fiscal year.

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G. Allowable/Unallowable Costs 

The Supportive Housing Program limits costs to specific categories. Providers should review the Department's budget pages for these programs for a complete list of allowable costs. The following are allowable and unallowable costs under the Supportive Housing Program:

Allowable Costs: 

  1. Direct Cost Services
    1. Advocacy/Intervention
    2. Case Management
    3. Counseling - Financial
    4. Counseling - Life Skills
    5. Counseling - All Other
    6. Outreach
    7. Mental Health Services
    8. Alcohol Abuse Services
    9. Substance Abuse Services
    10. Health/Dental Services
    11. Education
    12. Employment Services
    13. Child Care
    14. Children's Services
    15. Housing Placement/Inspection
    16. Follow Up
    17. Transportation
    18. English as a second language
    19. Legal Service Referrals
    20. HIV/AIDS Related Services
  2. Direct Program Costs: (May not exceed 15 percent of IDHS funds)
    1. Telephone
    2. Supplies
    3. Direct Program Personnel
    4. Maintenance

Unallowable Costs:  The following are some examples of unallowable costs;

  1. Payment on Behalf of Clients
  2. Liability Insurance
  3. Rent-Equipment
  4. Rent-Space
  5. Utilities
  6. Cell Phone Purchase
  7. Property Acquisition
  8. Major Renovation
  9. Lap Top Computer Purchases
  10. Payments for Property Management Functions

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H. Contract Budget Line Item Transfers

Providers are allowed to transfer up to a total of $500 among any Direct Service cost line item without having to obtain written permission from IDHS. The provider should keep a record of the transfer in the event that a monitoring review is conducted.

I. Program Monitoring

Representatives of the IDHS may perform periodic monitoring reviews, during normal business hours to review the management practices, fiscal procedures or other aspect of the provider's operations to ensure compliance with IDHS, State and Federal rules, regulation and policies.

  1. Notification:  The IDHS will send a written notification thirty days prior to visiting a provider if at all possible. Official notice will include a monitoring review sheet that must be completed before the IDHS representative arrives.
  2. Initial Site Visit:  Once a new grant is awarded by the IDHS, a representative from or designated by the IDHS may conduct a site visit to advise the contractor of the IDHS program standards and reporting documents. The visit is to help the Provider understand and follow IDHS rules and regulations. The initial visit to the site is also to make sure all State rules and regulations are followed. The IDHS, when doing a site visit, will review a sampling of all case files to determine service availability and utilization. Included in the case files for example are: intake form, assessment forms, case management, short and long term goals, referrals, and medical information.
  3. Program Review:  Whenever problems or issues are identified during monitoring, the IDHS may issue a Corrective Action Plan. Technical assistance may be provided by appropriate staff from the IDHS. The IDHS may also make recommendations to the provider.
  4. Corrective Action Plans:  Problems of continuing or serious nature may result in a Corrective Action Response from the IDHS. If a site has a serious violation, the provider will be notified in writing within ten days. The provider will then have thirty days to respond with a mandatory written plan of action to the violation. If necessary, the IDHS will conduct a follow-up visit to the provider to ensure implementation of the approved corrective action plan.
  5. Technical Assistance - Purpose:  The IDHS may provide technical assistance to the providers if needed. Upon request, the IDHS may respond to questions pertaining to fiscal reports, policy and procedures, rules and regulations and Federal and State laws.
  6. Fiscal Reporting:  Throughout the year, the IDHS will be available to help with questions pertaining to fiscal reporting that is required by the IDHS.
  7. Program:  The IDHS is available to advise the provider, if needed, on the policy and procedures of the program.
  8. Training:  The IDHS may conduct mandatory training sessions throughout the year. If feasible, and to the extent possible, the IDHS will notify providers at least 30 days in advance of mandatory training. These training seminars will cover areas such as fiscal reporting, participant reports and other areas designed to help providers meet State and Federal guidelines and requirements. The providers are required to attend mandatory training sessions.

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