Statement by SVHA Board regarding the Planned AHH Group Home

It has come to our attention that there is a house in Shannon Valley owned by Artists Helping the Homeless (AHH), a nonprofit organization.  We have been advised that AHH is planning to use the home as a respite home for carefully selected men referred to AHH by local professionals and agencies, who are looking to change their lives and become productive members of society.  We are further advised that AHH will NOT accept men into their program who have a history of violence, sexual offenses, or serious mental illness.

We understand that the AHH house is likely protected under federal law (the Fair Housing Act and Americans Disability Act) to allow it to operate as proposed if it seeks approval from the City of Overland Park to receive a reasonable accommodation to vary the zoning restrictions to allow it to be considered as a single family home.  It will be up to the City of Overland Park to make this determination.  We are subject to Overland Park’s jurisdiction and are bound by any determination that Overland Park makes regarding whether the AHH house qualifies as a single family home.  Accordingly, if the City of Overland Park approves the variance request, SVHA will have no legal authority to issue any violation notices on the basis of the AHH home’s status as a single family home.  At this point, we understand the AHH house is unoccupied and we have no knowledge of any current violations of the SVHA deed restrictions or covenants. 

Importantly, the SVHA Board has no authority to “approve” any resident’s use of their property.  The SVHA Board can only issue violation notices to residents who fail to comply with the SVHA deed restrictions and covenants.   The SVHA Board will continue to monitor the situation regarding the AHH house to verify compliance with the SVHA deed restrictions and covenants. 

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