Indianapolis News and HeadlinesWRTV Investigates


Indianapolis Housing Agency may sell housing properties

Posted at 11:42 AM, May 10, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-10 11:42:56-04

INDIANAPOLIS — The Indianapolis Housing Agency, which provides apartments to seniors, mothers feeling domestic abuse and working families, is struggling to pay its bills.

And fixing the money mess may involve selling properties thousands call home.

Sandra Bailey remains a cheerleader for public housing. She is a resident at Laurelwood and is well aware of the money mess the IHA is facing.

She has called Laurelwood home for two decades and this is the worse it has looked in years.

"IHA just don't have the manpower or money or anything to do what we need to make our successful," Bailey said.

The plan, known as Moving Forward, is meant to change that reality.

It details ways to improve finances, boost employee morale and fix compliance issues.

"We got to do a better job of serving the people that we are charted to serve," Marcia Lewis, interim director of IHA, said. "We're not doing a good job of that."

One possibility to improve its finances is selling off its headquarters on North Meridian Street and moving its offices to the City-County Building.

Also up in the air is the future of several IHA properties and families are concerned.

Properties like Laurelwood, 16th park and Indiana Avenue, to name a few, could be sold off as the agency has made it clear it could use at least $10 million to upgrade elevators and boilers.

"We're going to survive," Lewis said. "We are not going to look the same, but we're going to survive."

As for the tall grass at the property, IHA said it just renegotiated its contract with its grass-cutting service and residents should begin to see improvements this week.

The IHA board will meet Tuesday afternoon and the potential sale of properties will be a point of discussion.

IHA is still waiting for the results of several federal reviews.