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Poarch Band of Creek Indians Tribal Code

[Includes amendments and additions dated through 2004]


§19-1-1 Establishment of Housing Authority

(a) Pursuant to the powers and authority of the Constitution of the Poarch Band of Creek Indians there is hereby established a public body and Tribal entity known as the Poarch Creek Indian Housing Authority.

(b) In any suit, action or proceeding involving the validity or enforcement of or relating to any of its contracts, the Authority shall be conclusively deemed to have become established and authorized to transact business and exercise its powers upon proof of the adoption of this Ordinance. A copy of the Ordinance duly certified by the Secretary of the Council shall be admissible in evidence in any suit, action or proceeding.


§19-1-2 Purpose

(a) The Authority shall be, organized and operated for the purpose of:

(1) Remedying unsafe and unsanitary housing conditions that are injurious to the public health, safety and morals;

(2) Alleviating the acute shortage of decent safe, and sanitary dwellings for persons of low income; and

(3) Providing employment opportunities through the construction, reconstruction, improvement, alteration or repair and operation of low income dwellings.


§19-1-3 Definitions

(a) The following terms wherever used or referred to in this Ordinance, shall have the following respective meaning, unless a different meaning clearly appears from the context:

(1) "Area of Operation" means all areas within the jurisdiction of the Tribe and Tribal Court.

(2.) "Council" means the Poarch Band of Creek Indians' Tribal Council.

(3) "Federal Government" includes the United States of America, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, or any other agency or instrumentality, corporate or otherwise of the United States of America.

(4) "Homebuyer" means a person(s) who has executed a lease-purchase agreement with the Authority, and who has not yet received homeownership.

(5) "Housing Project" or "project" means any work or undertaking to provide or assist in providing (by any suitable method, including but not limited to: rental, sale of individual units in single or multifamily structures under conventional condominium, or cooperative sales contracts or lease-purchase agreements; loans; or subsidizing of rentals or charges) decent, safe and sanitary dwellings, apartments, or other living accommodations for persons of low income. Such work or undertaking may include buildings, land, leaseholds, equipment, facilities, and other real or personal property for necessary, convenient, or desirable appurtenances for streets, sewers, water service, utilities, parks, site preparation or landscaping, and for administrative, community, health, recreational, welfare, or other purposes. The term "housing project" or "project" also may be applied to the planning of the buildings and improvements, the acquisition of property or any interest therein, the demolition of existing structures, the construction, reconstruction, rehabilitation, alteration or repair of the improvements or other property and all other work in connection therewith, and the term shall include all other real and personal property and all tangible or intangible assets held or used in connection with the housing project.

(6) "Obligations" means any notes, bonds, interim certificates, debentures, or other forms of obligation issued by the Authority pursuant to this ordinance.

(7) "Obligee" includes any holder of an obligation, agent or trustee for any holder of an obligation, or lessor demising to the Authority property used in connection with a project, or any assignee or assignees of such lessor's interest or any part thereof, and the Federal government when it is a party to any contract with the Authority in respect to a housing project.

(8) "Persons of low income" means persons or families who cannot afford to pay enough to cause private enterprise in their locality to build an adequate supply of decent, safe, and sanitary dwellings for their use.


§19-1-4 Board of Commissioners

(a) The affairs of the Authority shall be managed by a Board of Commissioners composed of five persons.

(b) The Board Members shall be appointed, and may be reappointed, by the Council. A certificate of the Secretary of the Council as to the appointment or reappointment of any commissioner shall be conclusive evidence of the due and proper appointment of the commissioner.

(c) The Commissioner may be a member or non-member of the Tribe, and may be a member or nonmember of the Tribal Council.

(d) No person shall be barred from serving on the Board because he is a tenant or Homebuyer in a housing project of the Authority; and such commissioner shall be entitled to fully participate in all meetings concerning matters that affect all of the tenants or Homebuyers, even though such matters affect him as well. However, no such Commissioner shall be entitled or permitted to participate in or be present at any meeting (except in his capacity as a Tenant or Homebuyer), or to be counted or treated as a member of the Board, concerning any matter involving his individual rights, obligations or status as a Tenant or Homebuyer.

(1) The term of office shall be four years and staggered. When the Board is first established, one member's term shall be designated to expire in one (1) year, another to expire in two (2) years, a third to expire in three (3) years, and the last two in four (4) years, except that in the case of a prior vacancy, an appointment shall be only for the length of the unexpired term. Each member of the Board shall hold office until his successor has been appointed and has qualified.

(2) The Tribal Council shall name one of the Commissioners as Chairman of the Board. The Board shall elect from among its members a Vice-Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer; and no member may hold two of these positions. In the absence of the Chairman, the Vice-Chairman shall preside; and in the absence of both the Chairman and the Vice-Chairman, the Secretary shall preside.

(3) A member of the Board may be removed by the appointing power for serious inefficiency or neglect of duty or for misconduct in office, but only after a hearing before the appointing power and after the member has been given a written notice of the specific charges against him at least ten (10) days prior to the hearing. At any such hearing the member shall have the opportunity to be heard in person or by counsel and to present witnesses in his behalf. In the event of removal of any Board member, a record of the proceedings, together with the charges and findings thereon, shall be filed with the appointing power and a copy thereof sent to the appropriate office of the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

(4) The Commissioners shall not receive compensation for their services but shall be entitled to compensation for expenses, including travel expenses, incurred in the discharge of their duties.

(5) A majority of the full Board (i.e., notwithstanding the existence of any vacancies) shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business, but no Board action shall be taken by vote of less than a majority of such full Board.

(6) The Secretary shall keep complete and accurate records of all meetings and actions taken by the Board.

(7) The Treasurer shall keep full and accurate financial records, make periodic reports to the Board, and submit a complete annual report, in written form, to the Council as required by Article VII, Section I, of this Ordinance.

(e) Meetings of the Board shall be held at regular intervals as provided in the By-Laws. Emergency meetings may be held upon twenty-four (24) hours actual notice and business transacted, provided that not less than a majority of the full Board concurs in the proposed action.


§19-1-5 Powers

(a) The Authority shall have perpetual succession in its corporate name.

(b) The Council hereby gives irrevocable consent to allowing the Authority. To sue and be sued in its corporate name, upon any contract, claim or obligation arising out of its activities under this Ordinance and hereby authorizes the Authority to agree by contract to waive any immunity from suit which it might otherwise have; but the Tribe shall not be liable for the debts or obligations of the Authority.

(c) The Authority shall have the following powers which it may exercise consistent with the purposes for which it is established:

(1) To-adopt and use a corporate seal.

(2) To enter into agreements, contracts and under standings with any governmental agency, Federal, state or local (including the Council) or with any person, partnership, corporation or Indian tribe; and to agree to any conditions attached to Federal financial assistance, provided, however, the authority shall have no power or authority to affect in any manner the exclusive civil and criminal jurisdiction of the Poarch Band of Creek Indians Tribal Court.

(3) To agree, notwithstanding anything to the contrary contained in this Ordinance or in any other provision of law, to any conditions attached to Federal financial assistance relating to the determination of prevailing salaries or wages or payment of not less than prevailing salaries or wages or compliance with labor standards, in the development or operation of projects; and the Authority may include any contract let in connection with a project stipulation requiring that the contractor and any subcontractors comply with any conditions which the Federal government may have attached to its financial NIA aid to the project.

(4) To obligate itself, in any contract with the Federal government for annual contributions to the Authority, to convey to the Federal Government possession of or title to the project to which such contract relates, upon the occurrence of a substantial default (as defined in such contract) with respect to the covenants or conditions to which the Authority is subject; and such contract may further provide that in case of such conveyance, the Federal Government may complete, operate, manage, lease, convey or otherwise deal with the project and funds in accordance with the terms of such contract; provided that the contract requires that as soon as practicable after the Federal Government is satisfied with all defaults with respect to the project have been cured and that the project will thereafter be operated in accordance with the terms of the contract, the Federal Government shall reconvey to the Authority the project as then constituted.

(5) To lease property from the Tribe and others for such periods as are authorized by law, and to hold and manage or to sublease the same.

(6) To borrow or lend money, to issue temporary or long-term evidence of indebtedness, and to repay the same. Obligations shall be issued and repaid in accordance with the provisions of Article VI of this Ordinance.

(7) To pledge the assets and receipts of the Authority as security for debts; and to acquire, sell, lease, exchange, transfer or assign personal property or interests therein.

(8) To purchase land or interest in land or take the same by gift; to lease land or interests in land to the extent provided by law.

(9) To undertake and carry out studies and analyses of housing needs, to prepare housing needs, to execute the same, to operate projects and to provide for the construction, reconstruction, improvement, extension, alteration or repair of any project or any part thereof.

(10) With respect to any dwellings, accommodations, lands, buildings or facilities embraced within any project (including individual cooperative or condominium units): To lease or rent, sell, enter into lease-purchase agreements or lease with option to purchase; to establish and revise rents or required monthly payments; to make rules and regulations concerning the selection of Tenants or Homebuyers, including the establishment of priorities, and concerning the occupancy, rental, care, and management of housing units; and to make sure further rules and regulations as the Board may deem necessary and desirable to effectuate the powers granted by this Ordinance.

(11) To finance purchase of a home by an eligible Homebuyer in accordance with regulations and requirements of the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

(12) To terminate any lease or rental agreement or lease-purchase agreement when the Tenant or Homebuyer has violated the terms of such agreement, or failed to meet any of its obligations thereunder, or when such termination is otherwise authorized under the provisions of such agreement; and to bring action for eviction against such Tenant or Homebuyer.

(13) To establish income limits for admission that insure that dwelling accommodations in a housing project shall be made available only to persons of low income.

(14) To purchase insurance from any stock or mutual company for any property or against any risk or hazards.

(15) To invest such funds as are not required for immediate disbursement.

(16) To establish and maintain such bank accounts as may be necessary or convenient.

(17) To employ an executive director, technical and maintenance personnel and such other officers and employees, permanent or temporary, as the Authority may require; and to delegate to such officers and employees such powers or duties as the Board may deem proper.

(18) To take such further actions as are commonly engaged in public bodies of this character as the Board may deem necessary and desirable to effectuate the purposes of the Authority.

(19) To join or cooperate with any other public housing agency or agencies operating under the laws or ordinances of a State or another tribe in the exercise either jointly or otherwise, of any or all of the powers of the Authority and such other public housing agency or agencies for the purposes of financing (including but not limited to the issuance of notes or other obligations and giving security therefor), planning, undertaking, owning, constructing, operating or contracting such other public housing agency or agencies, so joining or cooperating with the Authority, to act on the Authority's behalf with respect to any or all powers, as the Authority's agent or, otherwise, in the name of the Authority or in the name of such agency or agencies, provided however that no act of the Authority shall waive the exclusive jurisdiction of the Poarch Band of Creek Indians' Tribal Court over all areas and operations of the Authority.

(20) To adopt such By-laws as the Board deems necessary and appropriate.

(d) It is the purpose and intent of this Ordinance to authorize the Authority to do any and all things necessary or desirable to secure the financial aid or cooperation of the Federal Government in the undertaking, construction, maintenance or operation of any project by the Authority.

(e) No ordinance or other enactment of the, Tribe with respect to the acquisition, operation or disposition of Tribal property shall be applicable to the Authority in its operations pursuant to this Ordinance.


§19-1-6 Obligations

(a) The Authority may issue obligations from time to time in its discretion for any of its purposes and may also issue refunding obligations for the purposes and may also issue refunding obligations for the purpose of paying or retiring obligations previously issued by it. The Authority may issue such types of obligations as it may determine, including obligations on which the principal and interest are payable:

(1) Exclusively from the income and revenues of the project financed with the proceeds of such obligations, or with such income and revenues together with a grant from the Federal Government in aid of such project;

(2) Exclusively from the income and revenues of certain designated projects whether or not they were financed in whole or in part with the proceeds of such obligations: or

(3) From its revenues generally. Any of such obligations may be additionally secured by a pledge of any revenues of any project or other property of the Authority.

(b) Neither the Commissioners of the Authority nor any person executing the obligations shall be liable personally on the obligations by reason of issuance thereof.

(c) The notes and other obligations of the Authority shall not be a debt of the Tribe and the obligations shall so state on their face.

(d) Obligations of the Authority are declared to be issued for an essential public and governmental purpose and to be public instrumentalities and, together with interest thereon and income therefrom, shall be exempt from taxes imposed by the Tribe. The tax exemption provisions of this Ordinance shall be considered part of the security for the repayment of obligations and shall constitute, by virtue of this ordinance and without necessity of being restated in the obligations, a contract between

(1) the Authority and the Tribe, and

(2) the holders of obligations and each of them, including all transferees of the obligations from time to time.

(e) Obligations shall be issued and sold in the following manner:

(1) Obligations of the Authority shall be authorized by a resolution adopted by the vote of a majority of the full Board and may be issued in one or more series.

(2) The obligations shall bear such dates, mature at such times, bear interest at such rates, be in such denominations, be in such form, either coupon or registered, carry such conversion or registration privileges, have such rank or priority, be executed in such manner, be payable in such medium of payment and at such places, and be subject to such terms of redemption, with or without premiums, as such resolution may provide.

(3) The obligations may be sold at public or private sale at not less than par.

(4) In any case any of the Commissioners of the Authority whose signatures appear on any obligations cease to be commissioners before the delivery of such obligations, the signatures shall, nevertheless, be valid and sufficient for all purposes, the same as if the commissioners had remained in office until delivery.

(f) Obligations of the Authority shall be fully negotiable. In any suit, action or proceeding involving the validity or enforceability of any obligation of the Authority or the security therefor, any such obligation reciting in substance that it has been issued by the Authority to aid in financing a project pursuant to this Ordinance shall be conclusively deemed to have been issued for such purpose, and the project for which such obligation was issued shall be conclusively deemed to have been planned, located and carried out in accordance with the purposes and provisions of this Ordinance.

(g) In connection with the issuance of obligations or incurring of obligations under leases and to secure the payment of such obligations; the Authority, subject to the limitations in this Ordinance may:

(1) Pledge all or any part of its gross or net rents, fees or revenues to which its right then exists or may thereafter come into existence.

(2) Provide for the powers and duties of obligees and limit their liabilities; and provide the terms and conditions on which such obligees may enforce any covenant or rights securing or relating to the obligations.

(3) Covenant against pledging all or any part of its rents, fees and revenues or personal property to which its title or right then exists or may thereafter come into existence or permitting or suffering any lien on such revenues or property.

(4) Covenant with respect to limitations on its right to sell, lease or otherwise dispose of any project or any part thereof.

(5) Covenant as to the obligations to be issued and as to the issuance of such obligations in escrow or otherwise, and as to the use and disposition of the proceeds thereof.

(6) Provide for the replacement of lost, destroyed, or mutilated obligations.

(7) Covenant against extending the time for the payment of its obligations or interest thereon.

(8) Redeem the obligations and covenant for their redemption and provide the terms and conditions thereof.

(9) Covenant concerning the rents and fees to be charged in the operation of a project or projects, the amount to be raised each year or other period of time by rents, fees and other revenues, and as to the use and disposition to be made thereof.

(10) Create or authorize the creation of special funds for monies held for construction or operating costs, debt service, reserves or other purposes and covenant as to the use and disposition of the monies held in such funds.

(11) Prescribe the procedure, if any, by which the terms of any contract with holders of obligations may be amended or abrogated, the proportion of outstanding obligations the holders or which must consent thereto, and the manner in which consent may be given.

(12) Covenant as to the use, maintenance and replacement of its real or personal property, the insurance to be carried thereon and the use and disposition of insurance monies.

(13) Covenant as to the rights, liabilities, powers and duties arising upon the breach by it of any covenant, condition or obligation.

(14) Covenant and prescribe as to events of default and terms and conditions upon which any or all of its obligations become or may be declared due before maturity, and as to the terms and conditions upon which such declaration and it consequences may be waived.

(15) Vest in any obligees or any proportion of them the right to enforce the payment of the obligations or any covenants, securing or relating to the obligations.

(16) Exercise all or any part or combination of the powers granted in this section.

(17) Make covenants other than and in addition to the covenants expressly authorized in this Section, of like or different character.

(18) Make any covenants and do any acts and things necessary or convenient or desirable in order to secure its obligations, or, in the absolute discretion of the Authority, tending to make the obligations more marketable although the covenants, acts or things are not enumerated in this section.


§19-1-7 Miscellaneous

(a) The Authority shall submit an annual report, signed by the Chairman of the Board, to the Council showing

(1) A summary of the year's activities;

(2) The financial condition of the Authority;

(3) The condition of the properties;

(4) The number of units and vacancies:

(5) Any significant problems and accomplishments:

(6) Plans for the future; and

(7) Such other information as the Authority or the Council may deem pertinent.

(b) During his tenure for one year thereafter, no commissioner, officer or employee of the Authority, or any member of any governing body of the Tribe, or any public official who exercises any responsibilities or functions with regard to the project, shall voluntarily acquire any interest, direct or indirect, in any project or in any property included or planned to be included in a project, or in any contract or proposed contract relating to any project, unless, prior to such acquisition, he discloses his interest in writing to the Authority, and the commissioner, officer or employee shall not participate in any action by the Authority relating to the property or contract in which he has an interest. If any commissioner, officer, or employee of the Authority involuntarily acquires any such interest, or voluntarily or involuntarily acquired such interest prior to appointment or employment as a commissioner, officer or employee, in any such event, shall immediately disclose his interest in writing to the Authority; and such disclosure shall be entered upon the minutes of the Authority, and the Commissioner, officer or employee shall not participate in any action by the Authority relating to the property or contract in which he has any such interest. Any violation of the foregoing provisions of this section shall constitute misconduct in office. This section shall not be applicable to the acquisition of any interest in obligations of the Authority issued in connection with any project, or to the execution of agreements by banking institutions for the deposit or handling of funds in connection with any project or to act as trustee under any trust indenture, or to utility services the rates for which are fixed or controlled by governmental agency, or to membership on the Board as provided in 19-1-6 (a) (1).

(c) Each project developed or operated under a contract providing for Federal financial assistance, shall be developed and operated in compliance with all requirements of such contract and applicable Federal legislation, and with all regulations and requirements prescribed from time to time by the Federal government in connection with such assistance.

(d) The Authority shall obtain or provide for the obtaining of adequate fidelity bond coverage for any officer, employee or other persons handling cash, or authorized to sign checks or certify vouchers.

(e) The Authority shall not construct or operate any project for profit.

(f) The Property of the Authority is declared to be public property used for essential public and governmental purposes and such property and the Authority are exempt from all taxes and special assessments of the Tribe.

(g) All property including funds acquired or held by the Authority pursuant to this Ordinance shall be exempt from levy and sale by virtue of an execution, and no execution or other judicial process shall issue against the same nor shall any judgment against the Authority be a charge or lien upon such property. However, the provisions of this section shall not apply to or limit the right of obligees to pursue any remedies for the enforcement of any pledge or lien given by the Authority on its rents, fees, or revenues or the right of the Federal Government to pursue any remedies conferred upon it pursuant to the provisions of this Ordinance or the right of the Authority to bring eviction actions in accordance with 19-1-15(c)(2).


§19-1-8 Cooperation in Connection with Projects

(a) For the purpose of aiding and cooperating in the planning, undertaking, construction or operation of projects the Tribe hereby agrees that:

(1) It will not levy or impose any real or personal property taxes or special assessments upon the Authority or any project of the Authority.

(2) It will furnish or cause to be furnished to the Authority and the occupants of projects all services and facilities of the same character and to the same extent as the Tribe furnishes from time to time without cost or charge to other dwellings and inhabitants.

(3) Insofar as it may lawfully do so, it will grant such deviations from any present or future building or housing codes of the Tribe as are reasonable and necessary to promote economy and efficiency in the development and operation of any project and at the same time safeguard health and safety, and make such changes in any zoning of the site and surrounding territory of any project as are reasonable and necessary for the development of such project, and the surrounding territory.

(4) It will do any and all things, within its lawful powers, necessary or convenient to aid and cooperate in the planning, undertaking, construction, or operation of projects

(5) The Poarch Band of Creek Indians Tribal Council hereby declares that the powers of the Tribal Court shall be vigorously utilized to enforce eviction of a Tenant or Homebuyer for nonpayment or other contract violations including action through the appropriate courts.

(6) The Tribal Court shall have jurisdiction to hear and determine an action for eviction of a Tenant or Homebuyer. The Council hereby declares that the powers of the Tribal Court shall be vigorously utilized to enforce eviction of a Tenant or Homebuyer for nonpayment or other contract violations.

(b) The provisions of this Article shall remain in effect with respect to any project, and said provisions shall act be abrogated, changed or modified without the consent of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, so long as:

(1) the project is owned by a public body or governmental agency and is used for low income housing purposes,

(2) any contract between the Authority and the Department of Housing and Urban Development for loans or annual contributions, or both, in connection with such projects, remains in force and effect, or

(3) any obligations issued in connection with such project or any monies due to the Department of Housing and Urban Development in connection with such project remain unpaid, whichever period ends the latest. If at any time title to, or possession of, any project is held by any public body or governmental agency authorized by law to engage in the development or operation of low income housing including the Federal Government, the provisions of this section shall inure to the benefit of and be enforced by such public body or governmental agency, provided however that the exclusive jurisdiction, over all legal actions shall remain forever vested in the Tribal Court.


§19-1-9 Approval by Secretary of the Interior

With respect to any financial assistance contract between the Authority and the Federal Government, the Authority shall obtain the approval of the Secretary of the Interior or his designee.

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