HUD No. 08-132
September 4, 2008
HUD AWARDS $16.9 MILLION FOR AFFORDABLE HOUSING AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT IN RURAL AMERICA
WASHINGTON - U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Steven Preston today awarded $16.9 million to 60 rural housing programs across the country to stimulate economic development, create jobs and produce more affordable housing. The funding is provided through HUD's Rural Housing and Economic Development Program (see attached).
"HUD is deeply invested in promoting affordable housing and community development throughout rural America," said Preston. "These grants will stimulate the kind of employment, economic growth, and housing development that will have a direct impact on working families in our rural communities."
Rural Housing and Economic Development (RHED) grants help pay for land acquisition, new home construction, housing demolition, infrastructure improvements and construction training. Other possible uses include homeownership and financial counseling; financial assistance to homeowners, businesses and developers; creating microenterprises and small business incubators; and establishing lines of credit or revolving loan pools to benefit the local business community. In addition to the funding announced today, rural communities are expected to generate nearly $59 million from other public and private sources to promote economic development and employment.
Qualified applicants are local rural nonprofit organizations, community development corporations, federally recognized Indian tribes, State housing finance agencies and/or local economic development agencies. RHED grants have provided nearly $223 million, creating/training more than 35,000 jobs, assisting nearly 5,500 businesses and producing 14,000 affordable homes.
Rural communities will use this funding as seed money to pay the start-up costs for housing or economic development projects. These grants will also help organizations to hire and train their staffs, develop strategic plans and acquire office space and other needed facilities.