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CUOMO ANNOUNCES $3.7 MILLION IN HOUSING ASSISTANCE TO GROUPS IN DELAWARE FOR SENIOR CITIZENS AND PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES
WASHINGTON - Housing and Urban Development Secretary Andrew Cuomo today awarded non-profit groups in Delaware $3.7 million to create 42 apartments for poor senior citizens and people with disabilities, and to provide rental assistance subsidies for five years to people living in the apartments.
An estimated 47 people will live in the low-rent apartments in Delaware. There will be about 26 senior citizens living in 21 apartments, and 21 people with disabilities living in 21 apartments.
"Too many older Americans struggling to get by on fixed incomes and too many people with disabilities who may be unable to work just don't have the money to pay for rising housing costs," Cuomo said. "HUD helps these people get housing they desperately need. We keep them out of nursing homes where they don't belong and out of slum housing."
Cuomo announced the grants in a telephone press conference along with Senator William Roth, Senator, Senator Joseph Biden and Congressman Michael Castle.
Cuomo said that the assistance is part of $792 million that HUD is awarding this week in affordable housing assistance for senior citizens and people with disabilities with very low incomes in 44 states and Puerto Rico.
The assistance around the country will create 8,943 subsidized apartments for an estimated 11,180 senior citizens and people with disabilities. Nationally, a total of 7,142 of the apartments will house about 8,930 senior citizens, and the remaining 1,801 apartments will house about 2,250 people with disabilities.
Most of the apartments funded by the grants will be newly constructed with the HUD funds, but some will be existing units that will be purchased, and rehabilitated when necessary.
Here is where the assistance will go in Delaware under HUD's Section 202 Program to house the elderly and under the Section 811 Program to house people with disabilities:
Households must be classified as having very low incomes - defined as no more than 50 percent of area median income - to be eligible for the housing assistance. However, most people who live in housing funded by the Section 202 and Section 811 assistance have incomes of less than 30 percent of the area median. Median income varies by metropolitan area, but on a national basis 30 percent of median income works out to about $10,000 a year for one person and about $11,500 annually for a two-person household.
People living in the apartments will pay 30 percent of their income for rent, with HUD subsidies paying for the remainder.
The Section 202 Program helps expand the supply of affordable housing and also provides supportive services for the elderly. These services include cleaning, cooking and transportation to allow older Americans to live as independently as possible in their own apartments. Grant recipients receive capital advances to construct, rehabilitate or acquire housing. Repayment of the capital advance is not required as long as the housing remains available for at least 40 years and is occupied by very low-income people 62 years of age or older. Eligible grant recipients include private non-profit organizations and consumer cooperatives.
The Section 811 Program allows people with disabilities to live independently by increasing the supply of rental housing with supportive services and related facilities. As with the 202 Program, Section 811 grantees receive capital advances to construct, rehabilitate or acquire housing. Eligible applicants are very low-income people with a disability.
In addition to awarding the new grants, Cuomo issued a HUD report that said more than 7.4 million senior citizen households pay more than they can afford for housing - defined as more than 30 percent of their income. Others live in housing that is substandard or fails to accommodate their physical limitations or needs for assistance.
The report - titled Housing Our Elders: A Report Card on the Housing Conditions and Needs of Older Americans - identifies serious challenges to four key dimensions of elderly housing conditions in America: adequacy, affordability, accessibility and appropriateness.
The report finds that three out of four Americans approaching retirement age own their own homes, and that their housing affordability problems, though significant, are less frequent than among younger households. However, the report also finds that reduced income and increasing frailty of older Americans can place at risk years of financial, physical and emotional investment in homes and neighborhoods.
Some of the other key findings of the report include:
Cuomo said HUD's new budget for Fiscal Year 2000 addresses many of the issues addressed in the report and provides funding to continue and expand elderly housing programs. These programs are part of the new Housing Security Plan for Older Americans and will enable HUD to develop a broad range of housing options - a continuum of care -- to meet the changing housing needs of senior citizens. These options include:
HUD FUNDING FOR HOUSING FOR SENIOR CITIZENS AND PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES
Section 202 - Supportive Housing for the Elderly
Project Location: Laurel, DE
The funds will be used for the new construction of 21 one-bedroom independent living apartments. The complex will be structured as 3 one-story residential buildings. Each building will contain 7 one-bedroom "cottage style" apartments in a U-shaped configuration with a community building centrally located. The community room will contain a wellness/medical services room, library corner, computer access and multipurpose center in addition to other amenities.
Section 811 - Supportive Housing for Persons with Disabilities
Project Location: Dover, DE
Financing is approved for a capital advance to develop and operate three scattered-site group homes. These will be community-based and are to be located within the City of Dover. The affordable housing will serve a total of twelve residents with chronic mental illness, providing them a permanent, stable place to live, with reliable and consistent support services to promote future independence. The community will benefit from less homelessness and reduced hospitalization and the residents will enjoy a better quality of life.
Project Location: Newark, DE
Funds will be used to rehabilitate existing residential properties to provide supportive housing for persons with mental retardation. Financing is approved for a capital advance to develop and operate two scattered-site group homes. The affordable housing will serve a total of nine residents and enable them to become contributing members of society.
Content Archived: January 20, 2009
Content Archived: January 20, 2009