BEACON PHOTO/MARSHA MCLAUGHLIN PEOPLE NEED HOMES — But do we need all these people? That’s the question many in West Volusia are asking, as development project after development project is approved by local governments, often despite the protest of neighbors. Here, workers begin construction on an affordable-housing apartment complex in DeLand called The Pines. The complex is now complete, and already full.

Volusia County’s Community Assistance Division will accept online pre-applications for the Housing Choice Voucher Program (Section 8) waiting list from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday, March 24.

The pre-applications must be submitted online at www.volusia.org/section8. Applicants may apply using a computer, mobile phone or tablet. Public-use computers are available at all public libraries during regular business hours.

Preferences are available for individuals and families whose head of household meets a number of qualifications.

To qualify for the preferences, applicants must provide supportive documentation within 10 calendar days after the pre-application is submitted. A list of required documents for each preference is posted on www.volusia.org/section8. The items can be submitted by email to Section8wl@volusia.org; faxed to 386-740-5112; mailed to 110 W. Rich Ave., DeLand, FL 32720; or uploaded to https://vcservices.vcgov.org/secureupload/d/section8.

The Housing Choice Voucher Program (Section 8) is the federal government’s major program that assists very-low and low-income families, including the elderly and the disabled, to afford decent, safe and sanitary housing in the private market.

As Volusia County’s public housing agency, the Community Assistance Division administers approximately 322 housing choice vouchers. This is the first time the county has opened its Section 8 waiting list since 2017.

Persons with a disability or limited English proficiency needing assistance to complete a pre-application must contact the Section 8 office at 386-736-5955 or section8wl@volusia.org by March 17 to schedule an appointment.

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— Compiled by Business Editor Joe Crews

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