Douglas County HRA designated a high performer by HUD
The Douglas County Housing and Redevelopment Authority was awarded $91,396, which included a “High Performer Bonus Adjustment” of $4,352.
ALEXANDRIA — On Feb. 17, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Office of Capital Improvements awarded more than $3.2 billion in Fiscal Year 2023 Capital Fund Program Formula Grant Awards to 2,770 Housing Authorities throughout the United States.
The Douglas County Housing and Redevelopment Authority was awarded $91,396 of these funds, which included a “High Performer Bonus Adjustment” of $4,352.
The grants provide financing for development, maintenance and management improvements as part of a nationwide grant to improve public housing across the country.
The DCHRA’s public housing program consists of 28 single-family duplexes built in the mid-1980s that are located in Alexandria, Osakis, Miltona, Brandon, Evansville and Kensington. The duplexes are a mix of two-, three- and four-bedroom housing for eligible low-income families.
HUD administers Federal aid to the local HRA’s so they can manage the housing units at affordable rents. The Public Housing program provides a supportive role in upward mobility for families during a time when housing costs are soaring. On average the program sees one family a year move on to purchase their own home.
DCHRA staff creates a five-year plan each year to determine and prioritize what repairs and replacements need to be completed. While the dollar figures change from year to year, the money from the Capital Fund Program is what funds these plans.
In a press release, Emajean Hanson-Ford, the executive director of the DCHRA said, “HUD’s capital funding award is a valued resource to complete repairs and modernization improvement to these units. The funds help us maintain our mission of providing safe, decent and affordable housing for the families, individuals and seniors we serve in Douglas County.”
With that said $91,360 may seem like a lot, but in reality that funding amount breaks down to only $3,264 per unit, just a drop in the bucket when it comes to the need. Because public housing has been underfunded for so long it can be difficult to fund large-scale projects.
This year the DCHRA plans to finish updating several bathrooms, replace outdated a/c units with new energy efficient units, and re-side one duplex. The re-siding project alone will be approximately $50,000, more than half the budget awarded.
Hanson-Ford stated the diligent planning and teamwork that their public housing coordinator, maintenance and financial staff do is what keep the units in such great condition on such a small budget.