Wisconsin Department of Commerce Newsletter
September 2004
Commerce Personnel Attend National HMIS Conference
The first Housing and Urban Development (HUD) sponsored National Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) Conference, held in Chicago September 14-15, concluded with nearly 500 participants applauding the final remarks delivered by Michael Roanhouse, Office of Special Needs Assistance Programs, and Paul Dorman, Office of Policy Development and Research. In their remarks Roanhouse and Dorman pointed out that more than 60% of all Continuum of Cares (COC's) in the country were now implementing an HMIS and another 35% were in the process of selecting an HMIS. They pointed out that HUD has supported this effort with cost-sharing Supportive Housing Program (SHP) HMIS grants, with technical assistance to support HMIS implementation and with the determination of data and technical standards. The new standards, released July 30, 2004, establish a common platform (data and security) for collecting and comparing data nationally.

As far as the future of HMIS is concerned, Roanhouse and Dorman told attendees that regarding the Annual Progress Report (APR) they could expect:

  • the electronic submittal of aggregate community data
  • a continued emphasis on performance measures and program outcomes on both a program and community level, and
  • a commitment to keep APR changes consistent with the final data standards.

HUD will also be working to coordinate HMIS efforts more closely with Consolidated Planning, the President's initiative to End Chronic Homelessness, and Housing Opportunities for People with AIDS (HOPWA). Other objectives include: simplifying local provider reporting, coordinating HMIS with Health and Human Services (HHS) Management Information Systems (MIS) such as: PATH, RYMIS and 211, and continue to use research projects to influence program evaluation and policy development.

Attending the conference from Wisconsin representing the Bureau of Housing were: Judy Wilcox, Loren Hoffmann, Phil Wells and Don Hammes. Complete information about the conference and technical HMIS assistance being provided by HUD can be viewed at: http://www.hmis.info.

--Don Hammes, Editor, WISP News

The newsletter is issued electronically every other month.

Please send comments or questions to Barbro McGinn, editor.

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