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Direction, management and administration of Minnesota’s Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) is a collaborative effort between Continuum of Care (CoC) regions, state agencies, regional and local communities and governmental bodies, tribes and community organizations. Role designations were developed to delineate responsibilities and create an effective and responsive statewide system.
The Institute for Community Alliances serves as the Lead Agency for HMIS in Minnesota, with Minnesota Housing providing the necessary legal framework and support. The Lead Agency sets policy, performs executive functions, and provides strategic direction and oversight for Minnesota’s Homeless Management Information System (HMIS). The Lead Agency also provides clear direction to the System Administrators and staffing support to the HMIS Task Force.
HMIS Task Force
The Homeless Management Information System Advisory Task Force (“HMIS Task Force”) is a decision-making body made of representatives of Continuum of Care (CoC) regions, State agencies, tribes and the community. The HMIS Task Force advises the Lead Agency on policy, planning, priorities, budget and operational matters concerning the implementation and administration of HMIS. They provide the forum for broader stakeholder engagement and serve as the point of collaboration among the CoC regions, state agencies, tribes, affected communities, and the Lead Agency. They provide the Lead Agency with information and advice needed to ensure system compliance with HUD and legislative mandates.
State System Administrator (SSA)
The Institute for Community Alliances serves as the SSA and oversees the technical design, implementation, and operation of the Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) and ServicePoint software to ensure that the system is fully understood and appropriately utilized by all parties throughout the state. They manage the day-to-day system operations while monitoring and enhancing the functionality of the database, and providing the foundation of HMIS training statewide and HMIS User technical support. The SSA provides structure and instructions to the Local System Administrators (LSAs).
Local System Administrator (LSA)
LSAs administer the database locally and are responsible for ensuring that all aspects of their regional use of HMIS are appropriately maintained. Minnesota is divided into 10 Continuum of Care (CoC) regions. LSAs support agencies and HMIS Users within one or more CoC regions. They facilitate and maintain communication with all HMIS stakeholders in their region and monitor data quality. They also represent HMIS at regional CoC meetings.
Continuum of Care (CoC) Regions
Continuum of Care (CoC)
CoCs are a community strategic plan to coordinate, organize and deliver housing and services and promote community-wide commitment to reduce the incidences of homelessness. CoCs also apply for funding to address homelessness from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). They are held responsible for the HMIS system under federal regulations.
Continuum of Care (CoC) Coordinators
Each Continuum of Care (CoC) designates a coordinator to manage its efforts. A CoC coordinator implements and ensures participation in Minnesota’s Homeless Management Information System (HMIS), and may provide HMIS administrative functions such as training, coordination, and report generation. He or she regularly convenes an active, inclusive and well-coordinated collaboration which works to track need, secure financial resources, and work toward regional goals to prevent and end homelessness.