Friday, March 30, 2012

Update on Rent Subsidy matter

A rent subsidy printout as
received by DH in 2006
Normally of course this blog only concerns itself with matters of pressing national and international import.

So apologies for parochialism, anecdotalism, and generally "belly-aching about my case".

But perhaps a case can be made that this update is something of a public service, as it appears to cast light on the state of HNSW current internal administrative ... the correct word would appear to be "woes" - judging by the inputs and outputs observed in that black box known as the regional HQ for DH's neighbourhood.

See preceding post for the first instalment of DH being thwarted in her attempt to pay more rent to HNSW.
Called HNSW again. Was advised that DH's revised rent subsidy application (submitted early Feb) had not been actioned because apparently there has been yet more staff turnover and another new CSO charged with managing DH's property would be starting on Monday. Further, DH was advised not to report a small additional amount of income of the amount of about $250 as it would not be worth the effort,  but that it was her choice. While thinking this was great, DH is terrified of being summarily sent an eviction notice, mindful that internal communications within HNSW are not that great, and she has already once had an agreement with one CSO ignored by another, leading to an eviction order,  a summons to the CTTT (the dreaded "Tribunal"), and her life on the lawn for a month in a state of extreme stress. (See this blog 2005-6). 

So she bargained for her constitutional right to pay more rent if she wanted to*, and it was agreed that she would report all her income at the next six-monthly review, due anytime soon. So you are once again DH's witnesses that this has happened.

The 2006 rent subsidy
report unfolded.
But seriously ...

*Some exaggeration here for humourous purposes nevertheless, the reality is that HNSW's income-based rental subsidy rules are too complicated for efficient rent management.  Time and again, interactions with staff show that they are mystified by the rules. Perhaps things have changed since DH reported this rental subsidy bungle in 2006 (as per accompanying illustrations) , but calculating rent for a casualised laborforce must be a nightmare.

For some interesting insights into the dilemmas of rent setting, check out papers from Shelter NSW' recent seminar "What's the rent?" earlier this year.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Let the world be a witness

Extract from submitted document
This is one of 6 documents submitted to HNSW Sussex St office on Feb 15th advising HNSW of a change to DH's income
On 2nd March DH followed up with a call to HNSW Burwood, to discover if the info had been received. The person on phone duty assured her that the information was received, but that the new manager of DH"s property had not yet gotten around to it.

Now it's nearly April.

Now if a tenant is so much as a week behind on rent, the letters start flying instantaneously .

Not that DH is particularly keen to pay more rent. But she would rather be paying it at the time the money was earned. Given that Newstart is just $235 a week, clearly, the extra money was spent catching up on necessities as soon as it was earned. There's nothing left now. So it would be a shame to fall behind, and find the dreaded eviction notice in the mail, which terrifying bolt from the blue was the reason this blog started in the first place.

It's tempting to start up an online registry of documents lodged by date and HNSW response date as a public service

DH is happy to blame the Liberal Government. Apparently their bright idea of splitting up HNSW between the Department of Family and Community Services and the Department of Finances and Services has proven to be a dog when it comes to efficiencies.