JAMESTOWN, NY (WNY News Now) – In an effort to improve the housing stock in the City of Jamestown lawmakers are seeking additional federal funding as part of a million dollar plan to create affordable housing within city limits.
Known as the Rental Rehabilitation Program, local leaders are asking for nearly $1.3 million dollars from the U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development, better known as HUD, to combat homelessness and help other vulnerable populations.
This specific plan, as Jamestown’s Director of Development Crystal Surdyk explains, would allocate funding to local landlords so they can renovate properties and keep rents low.
“Applicants could apply for up to $30,000 dollars per unit, up to three units,” explained Surdyk. “An applicant can apply for up to $90,000 dollars maximum. That could be anything that the apartment building might need, so if it needs a roof, if it needs siding, if it needs foundation repairs, whatever that might be. It’s not limited to having to be spent in a specific unit, however it can be.”
While most landlords will be able to apply for this program, there are stipulations in place.
“HUD is actually requiring a 15-year anti-speculation agreement,” stated Surdyk. “So that prohibits the property owner from selling that property within 15 years to make a profit. It also requires them to maintain a rental cap that is considered, and falls within HUD’s guidelines for affordable housing, and requires that they make those units available to low to moderate-income persons.”
This is just the latest in an effort to create affordable housing, last week Congressman Nick Langworthy announced a separate $1.5 million dollar allocation from HUD to also address housing availability and affordability.
Another project to transform Jamestown’s Gateway Center, located at 31 Water Street, into affordable apartments is also underway. As of now, the Director of Development tells us the project needs one more investor to match already secured funding to start construction.
“The Governor’s housing goals, and wanting to make sure affordable housing is available in communities,“ explained Surdyk. “I’m very encouraged that we’ll be able to find a way to make this happen.”
The Department of Development plans on sending the application to HUD on Tuesday, a month ahead of the deadline.