By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Grant to improve housing in Walthourville
AW WvilleHousingGrant
The Walthourville mayor and council and grant writer Patricia Waye have 300,000 reasons to smile about the new Community HOME Investment Program grant that will help city officials rehabilitate the homes of a dozen low- to moderate-income residents. - photo by Photo by Andrea Washington
With $300,000 in Community HOME Investment Program funds available, the Walthourville City Council hopes to improve the image of the city, while helping some of its poorest residents make needed home improvements.
The city applied for the housing grant about two months ago, according to grant writer Patricia Waye, and received the award earlier this month as part of the $42 million in federal grants recently given to the state of Georgia by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.
The goal for the council is to use the funds to restore a total of 12 homes within the city.
“The grant application sets forth that you plan to address at least nine ‘stick-built’ houses and you’re going to address those with rehabilitation, meaning bringing those up to property standards,” Waye told city council members during a meeting last week. “In addition to that, if you have a citizen who lives in an older mobile home that is not feasible to repair or rehab, then the grant (will allow the city) to replace three old mobile homes with three new ones.”
The mayor and council have until Nov. 7 to hold a public hearing on the CHIP grant, at which time city officials will begin establishing a list of residents seeking assistance from the program.
Residents selected to receive help will be chosen on a first come, first serve basis, although priority will be given to homeowners with severe electrical or structural hazards and the elderly.
Applicants will also be required to qualify under certain financial stipulations.
“This program is designed to assist low and moderate-income families so there will be an income cap that the program will have to follow, based on the income of the entire household,” Waye said.
The average estimated cost of rehabbing each unit is $33,581, which residents will receive in “forgivable loans” from the city.
“These are not grants,” Waye said. “But these loans are forgivable loans, which means that they will have an obligation to the city of Walthourville for the period of that loan, but as a long as they remain in that house-they don’t sell it, they don’t try to refinance it, don’t transfer title to it in any other way-that loan will be written off every year a certain percentage until it comes to zero.”
With plans to continue seeking initiatives that benefit Walthourville’s estimated 4,000 residents, Waye concluded city officials should be commended for taking this first step toward “investing in the needs of their citizens.”
Sign up for our e-newsletters