V-Tech is a Veteran Owned (VOSB), Minority Business Enterprise (MBE), technology-based firm that is ISO/IEC 20000 Certified. Our Small Disadvantaged Business (SDB) and 8(a) status provide unique opportunities to serve state, federal and DoD organizations.

Case Studies

An Interagency Agreement (IAA) was established between the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to create the FEMA-HUD Disaster Housing Assistance Program (DHAP)-Ike, which was administered by HUD.

Under this program, local Public Housing Authorities (PHAs) were awarded grants from FEMA to provide rental assistance and case management services to an estimated 50,000 families affected by Hurricane Ike and Gustav in the gulf region. The majority of the families were located in major metropolitan areas, with large numbers in Houston, Galveston, Beaumont/Port Arthur, Baton Rouge, and New Orleans.

The Problem | Disaster Assistance to Displaced Ike/Gustav Victims

The purpose of the DHAP-Ike program was to provide disaster assistance to the displaced families. To effectively implement and administer the DHAP program, trained personnel and continued support was needed.

The objectives of this program ensured:

  • Seamless implementation and day-to-day management and administration of the DHAP program; including the Disaster Information System (DIS), which was the system of record
  • HUD met the reporting requirements and deadlines as set forth in the IAA
  • Management of the project plan
  • Sufficient resources were available for the implementation of DHAP
  • On-site and remote assistance to DHAP-Ike grantees were provided
  • Reports and data were delivered as needed and
  • Implementation of the DHAP was properly documented

The Solution | First Line of Contact for Issue Resolution

V-Tech served as the DHAP-Ike program administrators providing technical assistance to DHAP-Ike grantees. V-Tech managed the day-to-day activities of the DHAP-Ike grant program for HUD. We had staff onsite in Washington, DC, Texas, and Louisiana to support this effort.

We managed the DHAP-Ike tenant information database and worked directly with HUD to track and process grantees. We uploaded new grant program participants into the Disaster Information System (DIA), tested for application functionality and data accuracy, and conducted data exchanges with FEMA. We collated and prepared all reports, as requested, and provided other ad-hoc reports as needed. These reports included database generated reports, spreadsheets, and narratives.

V-Tech was directly responsible for all DHAP-Ike correspondence and email boxes including developing and answering programmatic questions and issues, which were reported back to HUD on a bi-weekly basis. We maintained the log of all emails as well as letters from families and congressional correspondence.

We were the first line of contact for issue resolution. We manned the 1-800 call centers in Washington DC, Texas, and Louisiana for families and PHAs that addressed program issues and concerns. V-Tech was responsible for ensuring that all issues and concerns were resolved in a timely manner. V-Tech reported the problem and its resolution back to the HUD program office. This allowed HUD to make informed decisions on upcoming program enhancements.

Specifically, V-Tech was responsible for managing the DIS. FEMA forwarded eligible family (grantee) data to HUD on a weekly basis. The data was uploaded via ORACLE and copied to MS Access. V-Tech “scrubbed” the FEMA data to prepare status reports on the number of families processed into DIS. The data was validated and quality checked to reconcile the databases to ensure that there were no data duplications. These status reports were prepared for HUD senior directorate and officials, congressional offices, and the White House.

There were excessive changes to the database, which required the development of new and the reconfiguration of existing fields and tables on a periodic basis. V-Tech's team of IT and Business Analysts used this data to produce the required and ad-hoc customer reports.

DIS was the system of record for the HUD DHAP for processing FEMA grantees into, through, and out of the FEMA grant program. It was a front-end, Web based application that PHAs used to update tenant personal and leasing information. Our field staff assisted the PHAs in Texas, Louisiana, and the rest of the United States with processing referred families into DIS, resolving program issues at the PHA support level, and ensuring that the PHAs were providing grantees with the services they were supposed to receive pursuant to the DHAP Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs).

We provided outreach assistance in accordance with HUD policies and procedures. V-Tech staff was responsible for contacting, maintaining, and monitoring calls to families ensuring that they were aware of the program as well as new program changes. At the onset of DHAP, many of the families were displaced in hotels.

As the program administrators, V-Tech ensured that the due diligence was completed and outreach was performed for the affected families. This outreach was also provided to the PHA on a monthly basis via a television broadcast. PHAs received updates and directions on the new policies to ensure that they understood how the families would be serviced through the program and what services they would be providing as result of the new or upcoming eligibility requirements.

We traveled with HUD Senior Management to conduct on-site visits of the 10 top PHAs and to monitor the number of families that were referred by FEMA as well as the families actually being serviced by the DHAP through the PHAs we visited.

The Result | Exemplary Service in the Administration of the DHAP Program

V-Tech performed exemplary service in the administration of the DHAP program by meeting the needs of all 50,000 families and returning them to self-sufficiency within the initial 12-month contract period. Because HUD's mission was accomplished on time and within budget due to V-Tech's efficiency and expertise, there was no need to exercise the 6-month option period.

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