Uncle Sam Wants to Pay to Fix Up Your House

The Times Herald reported this morning that the Borough of Conshohocken is set to receive funds through a Community Development Block Grant, which is funded by the federal government and Borough Council plans to hold a hearing regarding how the funds should be spent on June 5th at 7:00 p.m. at Borough Hall at 8th and Fayette.

The Times Herald quotes Christine Stetler, the borough’s community development and zoning officer as saying, “The first public hearing will gather comments on how we have used the money in the past and how people think we should use the money in the coming year. Our primary use has been to operate a single-family, owner-occupied rehabilitation program.”

In 2012 Conshy received $108,637 in Community Development Block Grant funds and distributed to residents $91,637 for housing rehabilitation. What happened to the $17,000? The municipalities are permitted to utilize 18 percent of the funding for administration costs.

How have the funds traditionally been used? In the Times Herald article Stetler states, “The funds are used for repairs to bring homes up to code and to bring homes up to the housing quality standards of the federal department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). We can do roofs, replace windows, redo bathrooms and kitchens and replace heaters and hot water heaters. “We are required to reduce the hazard of lead-based paint. That includes testing, sanding of window frames and encapsulating painted surfaces.”

How much is Conshy getting this year through the program? It is not known yet.

Do you qualify? A recipient of a grant can not have an annual income exceeding 80 percent of the Area Median Income.

You can read the entire article from the Times Herald here.