|HUD No. 06-03||For
June 30, 2003
LOCKPORT'S FIRST SECTION 8 HOMEOWNERSHIP PROGRAM PRODUCES
TRUE SUCCESS STORY
LOCKPORT, NY - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's new Section 8 Homeownership Program, the Lockport Housing Authority and Lockport Community Development are celebrating a true success story. HUD Buffalo Office Director, Stephen T. Banko, III joined Lockport Mayor Thomas C. Sullivan, Lockport Housing Authority Assistant Director Kevin A. Bancroft, Kevin McDonough from Lockport Community Development and other Lockport officials to congratulate Lockport's newest homeowner, LuLu Jones Cheatham.
The U.S. Department of HUD's Section 8 Homeownership Program paves
the way for recipients of Section 8 Rental Assistance to use their
rental voucher towards the purchase of a home rather than lease
a unit. The program
provides the opportunity to attend housing counseling sessions and secure the necessary financing to purchase
their first home. "Often we think in terms of building homes when in fact, we are in the business of building lives by giving a qualified recipient a chance at her share of the American Dream. We help build better cities through the
pride of ownership." said Stephen T. Banko, Director of HUD Buffalo.
LuLu Jones Cheatham has always known that one day she would own her own home. "Dreams are for sleepers, you have to step up to the plate if you want something to happen for you" said LuLu who credits her mother, Henrietta who raised seven children, for many motivational statements.
LuLu's connection with the City's Housing Authority goes back
some thirty years when her mother moved into the David Woody Memorial
Apartments in the early 1970s. LuLu's love for education saw her
attending Buffalo State College and later, Bryant and Stratton and
the Marjon School of Beauty Culture. During that time, she also
had two daughters and ran her own beauty salon until one of her
daughters was diagnosed with a severe liver disorder. After the
loss of her daughter, LuLu threw herself into work and tried her
hand at real estate and homecare services. It
was at this point in her life she applied to the Section 8 Assisted Housing program to help out. That was thirteen years ago. During her tenancy, LuLu has served on the Advisory Board of the Authority representing Section 8 residents. LuLu is now employed by VNA Home Care Services which is a job she loves. When the Housing Authority sent around a letter regarding the new Section 8 Homeownership Program, LuLu jumped at the chance. Four months later, she is ready to move into her own home.
The Lockport Housing Authority has partnered with the City of
Lockport Department of Community Development
and was able to take advantage of the mortgaging and counseling expertise already in place in the Community Development Program.
Since 1992, The City of Lockport Department of Community Development has been the recipient of $4,000,000 in grant funds to assist qualified applicants in the purchase of their first house. In the ten years since the first Homeownership Program closing on June 24, 1993, a total of 195 grants of up to $19,000 have been awarded to income eligible families and individuals, which has earned them the distinction of receiving the Governor's "Best Practices Award" in 2002.
The staffs of the Lockport Housing Authority, the Lockport Community
Development Program and the U.S.
Department of HUD are excited for LuLu and look forward to many more success stories to come.