Bellingham, Seattle & King County Win Recovery Act Funds to Turn Public Housing Green

WASHINGTON, DC – September 19, 2009 – (RealEstateRama) — U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Donovan today announced that the Bellingham, Seattle and Snohomish County housing authorities have been awarded a total of $21,295,483 in Recovery Act competitive grant funds to make three housing complexes “green.”

As a result of today’s awards, the Bellingham housing authority’s Lincoln Square complex will receive $9,981,511, the Seattle housing authority’s Lake City Village complex will receive $8,013,972 and the Snohomish County housing authority’s Marysville Pointe complex will receive $3,300,000.

The three awards in Washington State were among 36 awards nationwide receiving $300 million under the Public Housing Capital Funds component of the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act.

“The grants being awarded today are a perfect example of using the Recovery Act to rebuild the economy stronger and wiser by investing in new and emerging sustainable industries.” said HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan. “This Recovery Act funding will not only reduce energy costs for public housing authorities and mitigate negative environmental impacts, but will also create much-needed ‘green’ jobs right here in Denver, and across the country.”

The announcement came during a visit to the Denver Housing Authority’s South Lincoln Park Development in Denver, CO, a recipient of $10 million worth of the funding. During the visit, which was part of the White House Urban Listening Tour, the Secretary was joined by White House Office of Urban Affairs Director Adolfo Carrion, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood and Environmental Protection Administrator Lisa Jackson.

The Public Housing Capital Funds being awarded today are provided through The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act) and are specifically designated for the creation of energy efficient communities through transformational “green” retrofits, which will substantially increase energy efficiency and environmental performance of public housing properties. The funding will reduce energy costs, generate housing authority energy savings, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions attributable to energy consumption.

In February, just eight days after President Obama signed the Recovery Act into law, HUD allocated nearly $3 billion in Recovery Act funding to more than 3,100 public housing authorities across the U.S. Distributed by formula, that funding is already being put to work to improve public housing and create safer, more livable environments for lower income residents.

The funding being announced today is part of an additional $1 billion in Public Housing Capital Funds designated by the Recovery Act to be awarded competitively. HUD accepted applications under this program from public housing authorities between June 22 and August 18. Grants under the program are now being awarded to public housing authorities that effectively addressed the requirements in the Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) under the following four funding categories:

Public Housing Transformation: $96 million out of $100 million has been awarded to transform obsolete public housing projects into newly built or renovated developments.

Financing Stalled Projects: $200 million is available to allow PHAs to develop or renovate public housing projects stalled due to lack of resources.

Housing for the Elderly/Persons with Disabilities: $95 million is available to improve public housing units and create community facilities for the delivery of medical and other services to this vulnerable population.

Energy Efficiency: $600 million is available for PHAs to create more energy efficient public housing units. Applications were due for this category on July 21, 2009. The grants being awarded today fall under this category.

The remaining Public Housing Capital Fund competitive grants will be awarded in the coming weeks under the housing for the elderly/persons with disabilities, gap financing for stalled projects and energy efficiency funding categories.

HUD’s Capital Fund Program provides annual funding to public housing authorities to develop, finance and/or modernize the public housing in their communities. This funding can be used to make large-scale improvements such as new roofs and for the replacement of plumbing and electrical systems to increase energy efficiency.

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HUD is the nation’s housing agency committed to sustaining homeownership; 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 and enforces the nation’s fair housing laws. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet at www.hud.gov and espanol.hud.gov.

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