September 30, 2014

Housing commission to hold public hearing

By James Kuch
Staff Writer | news@arenacindependent.com
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STANDISH — County residents will have the opportunity to give input on a plan that would use grant money to repair homes in Standish.

The Arenac County Board of Commissioners and the Arenac County Housing Commission have scheduled a public hearing At 2 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 15, at the Arenac County Building, to review a grant application to the Michigan Development Block Grant Housing Program.

Jill Eyre, housing director for the Arenac County Housing Commission said that the public hearing is a requirement for receiving the grant. The housing commission received $126,300 in state Housing Fund Resource 2009 HOME money that will go toward helping homeowners in Standish.

“We have already been (awarded) the money,” she said. “We will be using the money for the Welles Addition subdivision.”

Eyre said the target area is on the south side of Cedar Street, west of US-23, and covers around 100 homes. She added that the grant money will help low-income homeowners who may need help keeping their homes up to quality standards.

“We want to help homeowners keep up their home’s standards,” she said. “We can do home improvement projects that their homes may need, like roof (repair).”

Eyre said it is important to help homeowners in the area who might need it.

“In the target area, there are many older homes and some mobile homes,” she said. “We want to be sure those homes are a safe place for families to live.”

Arenac County Chairman Mike Snyder said that he believes in the housing commission’s cause.

“This is one (commission) that really serves our community,” he said.

Eyre said that the housing commission helped improve 20 homes across Arenac County last year. The commission was established in 1993.

“Usually, we help homes across the county,” she said. “This is the first time since I have been here that we have sectioned off a block of homes like this.”

Eyre said the Bay Area Community Foundation gave additional funding to the housing commission to help homeowners who may not be able to pay utilities.

“We give $200 to homeowners for their utility bills,” she said.

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