Hastings Housing Authority
The mission of the Hastings Housing Authority is to promote adequate, affordable housing, economic opportunity and a suitable living environment for the families we serve, without discrimination.
The Housing Authority of the City of Hastings, Nebraska was created and established in 1954 by the City of Hastings. The agency was established for the purpose of obtaining the transfer of a temporary war and veterans housing project on the southeast edge of the city from the U.S. Housing and Home Finance Agency. The property was built by the U.S. Navy for housing nearly 10,000 workers employed during the peak production period at the Naval Ammunition Depot east of Hastings. The property was temporary housing known as NEB. 25032 and 25074, but locals called it Spencer Park or Chimney Town. The property consisted of 198 cement-block dwelling structures containing 840 family dormitory dwelling units, and seven non-dwelling structures. The Housing Authority maintained and operated the property until it was gradually sold to the Evangelical Lutheran Good Samaritan Society, Inc., a retirement center (now known as Good Samaritan Village) — with the exception of Circle F, which was sold to the Good Hope Training School.
The Housing Authority is governed by a board of commissioners appointed by the mayor with the approval of the city council. The board of commissioners applied for, and received funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development in 1974 for the Section 8 Housing Certificate Program for 110 units of subsidized housing. Unlike Spencer Park, this program funded rental subsidy in existing rental units not owned by the Housing Authority. This program, now called the Housing Choice Voucher Program, is still managed by the Housing Authority with authorization to subsidize up to 477 units.
The current members of the board of commissioners are Patrick Kern, chairman; Deb Ross, vice-chairman; Scott Pauley, Douglas Koopman and Irene Dunbar. The board meets the third Wednesday of even numbered months. The Housing Authority office is located in the city office building, 220 N. Hastings Ave. The staff of the Housing Authority consists of Rick Ruzicka, managing agent/executive director, Jeanne Leick, deputy director/agent, Jean Harlow, HCV program supervisor and Melissa Choate and Monica Oliva, HCV specialists. Melissa is responsible for applicants/tenants with last names of A-M and Monica is responsible for applicants/tenants with last names of N-Z.