2015 ORS § 458.505¹
Community action agency network as delivery system for federal antipoverty programs
- • duties of Housing and Community Services Department
(1) The community action agency network, established initially under the federal Economic Opportunity Act of 1964, shall be the delivery system for federal antipoverty programs in Oregon, including the Community Services Block Grant, Low Income Energy Assistance Program, State Department of Energy Weatherization Program and such others as may become available.
(2) Funds for such programs shall be distributed to the community action agencies by the Housing and Community Services Department with the advice of the Community Action Partnership of Oregon.
(3) In areas not served by a community action agency, funds other than federal community services funds may be distributed to and administered by organizations that are found by the Housing and Community Services Department to serve the antipoverty purpose of the community action agency network.
(4) In addition to complying with all applicable requirements of federal law, a community action agency shall:
(a) Be an office, division or agency of the designating political subdivision or a not for profit organization in compliance with ORS chapter 65.
(b) Have a community action board of at least nine but no more than 33 members, constituted so that:
(A) One-third of the members of the board are elected public officials currently serving or their designees. If the number of elected officials reasonably available and willing to serve is less than one-third of the membership, membership of appointed public officials may be counted as meeting the one-third requirement;
(B) At least one-third of the members are persons chosen through democratic selection procedures adequate to assure that they are representatives of the poor in the area served; and
(C) The remainder of the members are officials or members of business, industry, labor, religious, welfare, education or other major groups and interests in the community.
(c) If the agency is a private not for profit organization, be governed by the Community Action Board. The board shall have all duties, responsibilities and powers normally associated with such boards, including, but not limited to:
(A) Selection, appointment and dismissal of the executive director of the agency;
(B) Approval of all contracts, grant applications and budgets and operational policies of the agency;
(C) Evaluation of programs; and
(D) Securing an annual audit of the agency.
(d) If the organization is an office, division or agency of a political subdivision, be administered by the board that shall provide for the operation of the agency and be directly responsible to the governing board of the political subdivision. The administering board at a minimum, shall:
(A) Review and approve program policy;
(B) Be involved in and consulted on the hiring and firing of the agency director;
(C) Monitor and evaluate program effectiveness;
(D) Ensure the effectiveness of community involvement in the planning process; and
(E) Assume all duties delegated to it by the governing board.
(e) Have a clearly defined, specified service area. Community action service areas may not overlap.
(f) Have an accounting system that meets generally accepted accounting principles and be so certified by an independent certified accountant.
(g) Provide assurances against the use of government funds for political activity by the community action agency.
(h) Provide assurances that no person shall, on the grounds of race, color, sex, sexual orientation or national origin be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity funded in whole or in part with funds made available through the community action program.
(i) Provide assurances the community action agency shall comply with any prohibition against discrimination on the basis of age under the Age Discrimination Act of 1975 or with respect to an otherwise qualified individual with disabilities as provided in section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
(5) For the purposes of this section, the Oregon Human Development Corporation is eligible to receive federal community service funds and low-income energy assistance funds.
(6) The Housing and Community Services Department shall:
(a) Administer federal and state antipoverty programs.
(b) Apply for all available antipoverty funds on behalf of eligible entities as defined in this section.
(c) In conjunction with the Community Action Partnership of Oregon, develop a collaborative role in advocating for, and addressing the needs of, all low income Oregonians.
(d) Biennially produce and make available to the public a status report on efforts by it and state agencies to reduce the incidence of poverty in Oregon. This report shall contain figures regarding the numbers and types of persons living in poverty in Oregon. The report shall also describe the status of efforts by the department and the Department of Human Services to implement the state policy regarding homelessness described in ORS 458.528 (Policy on homelessness).
(e) On a regular basis provide information to the Community Action Partnership of Oregon on the activities and expenditures of the Housing and Community Services Department.
(f) As resources are available, provide resources for technical assistance, training and program assistance to eligible entities.
(g) As resources are available, provide resources pursuant to ORS 409.750 (State goal to eliminate or alleviate poverty) for the training and technical assistance needs of the Community Action Partnership of Oregon.
(h) Conduct a planning process to meet the needs of low income people in Oregon. That process shall fully integrate the Oregon Human Development Corporation into the antipoverty delivery system. The planning process shall include development of a plan for minimum level of services and funding for low income migrant and seasonal farmworkers from the antipoverty programs administered by the agency.
(i) Limit its administrative budget in an effort to maximize the availability of antipoverty federal and state funds for expenditures by local eligible entities. [Formerly 184.802; 1997 c.249 §156; 2003 c.14 §289; 2003 c.186 §15; 2007 c.100 §28; 2009 c.64 §3; 2009 c.407 §2]