Traverse City Record-Eagle

Latest News - Mobile

May 10, 2014

City's housing director on notice

TRAVERSE CITY — A push to elevate the Traverse City Housing Commission into a regional leader in housing development may leave the commission's long-serving executive director out on the street.

A majority of city housing commissioners over the past 11 months gave Executive Director Ilah Honson unsatisfactory performance evaluations, according to documents obtained by the Record-Eagle through multiple state Freedom of Information Act requests. Commissioners also notified Honson they will post her $68,700-a-year job when her contract expires Jan. 31, 2015. Honson can apply for the same job.

Commissioners gave Honson strong marks in managing the federal housing voucher program and its two public housing properties, the 115-apartment complex Riverview Terrace, and 19 townhouses at Orchardview. But commissioners said she lacked leadership, initiative, and board communication.

"Everybody recognizes we have a strength in management of the existing properties, but there are other areas leadership could improve," said Andy Smits, housing commission president. "Our strategic plans calls for developing housing to meet the needs of the community; that we are a central authority on the subject, instead of just a manager of two projects that haven't had any housing added to them in eight to 10 years."

Honson declined to respond to requests for comment, but one housing commissioner resigned over the matter and accused commissioners of micromanaging.

"It’s the board's control of the executive director that is bothersome to me," said Judy Myers, who resigned in February. "They're wanting to review her correspondences and discussions with the press. You can’t look over her shoulder on every single letter that she writes."

Myers, director for the Cadillac Housing Commission, said the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development gives the Traverse City Housing Commission its highest ranking and the organization is financially sound.

Smits said housing commissioners haven't fired Honson; instead, they opened her job to competition to see if there might be a better candidate to help the housing commission reach its full development potential.

Text Only

Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
Associated Press Video
What's Got Jack Black Freaking Out at Comic-Con? Doctors Remove 232 Teeth From Teen's Mouth Bradley Cooper Explains His Voice in 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Deja vu: Another NYPD officer choke-holding a suspect Chapter Two: Becoming a first-time director 'Fifty Shades of Grey': Watch the Super Sexy First Trailer Now! Reports: Ravens RB Ray Rice Suspended For 1st 2 Games Of The Season Air Algerie plane with 119 on board missing over Mali Diamond Stone, Malik Newman, Josh Jackson and others showcase talent Free Arturo - The World's Saddest Polar Bear A Look Back at Batman On Film Through The Years LeBron James -- Dropped $2k On Cupcake Apology ... Proceeds To Benefit Charity Snoop Dogg Says He Smoked Weed at the White House Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Chris Pratt Interrupts Interview To French Braid Intern's Hair Shirtless Super Mario Balotelli Dances While Ironing - @TheBuzzeronFOX Whoa! Watch "Housewives" Star Do the Unthinkable LeBron apologizes to neighbors with cupcakes Justin Bieber In Calvin Klein Underwear Shoot Samsung Pre-Trolls The IPhone 6 With New Ad