January 6, 2004
HUD RELEASES $2 MILLION TO DEPARTMENT OF HAWAII HOME LANDS
Initial Funding to Start Construction on Single-family Homes
WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has released $2 million to the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands that will be used to develop 440 single-family homes in South Kohala on Hawaii.
"This funding will help more Native Hawaiian families enjoy the American Dream of homeownership," said HUD Assistant Secretary Michael Liu.
The funding comes from HUD's Native Hawaiian Housing Block Grant (NHHBG) Program, the first federal housing block grant appropriated solely for the benefit of Native Hawaiians eligible to live on Hawaiian Home Lands. The funding, which is part of a $9,537,600 grant HUD awarded DHHL last year, is similar to funding that has been available to American Indians and Alaska Natives since 1996.
The $2 million allows the first phase of construction to begin on 34 lots, which includes building infrastructure and site development. Additional NHHBG funds will be earmarked in fiscal years 2004 and beyond for related construction activities.
The NHHBG Program was created by the Hawaiian Homelands Homeownership Act of 2000, with this being its second year of funding.
The block grant allows DHHL develop and support affordable rental and homeownership housing and provide housing services for eligible low-income Native Hawaiian families. Activities include: construction or reconstruction of affordable housing; downpayment and closing costs assistance; direct lending or interest subsidies; housing counseling; payments to prevent foreclosures on homes; tenant-based rental assistance; and safety and security activities.
HUD is the nation's housing agency committed to increasing homeownership, particularly among minorities; creating affordable housing opportunities for low-income Americans; and supporting the homeless, elderly, people with disabilities and people living with AIDS. The Department also promotes economic and community development as well as enforces the nation's fair housing laws. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet and espanol.hud.gov.