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HUD awards I.V. Housing Authority $388,513 for affordable housing

July 03, 2001|By RUDY YNIGUEZ, Staff Writer

BRAWLEY — The Imperial Valley Housing Authority has received $388,513 in housing voucher grants from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

The money is part of $448 million in new vouchers to subsidize the cost of housing for about 79,000 additional families nationwide, according to information provided by HUD.

Section 8 vouchers and certificates is HUD's housing choice voucher program is the government's major initiative for helping very low-income families, people with disabilities and the elderly afford adequate housing.

Locally, Andrea Roark, IVHA executive director, said she is pleased the money is there.

"I'm very excited," she said this morning, adding while the Valley needs the money, the Valley also needs more housing for its very low-income residents.

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The money is expected to supply 100 housing vouchers locally.

Roark said voucher recipients are expected to pay 30 percent of their housing needs, which includes rent and utilities, and the IVHA pays the difference, but that the local fair market rent is $550; that is, anything above that total cost cannot be used for subsidized housing.

In April, the authority received about 2,000 applications for housing assistance, and Roark said as long as the information remains current, new applications are not required.

The amount of the vouchers also depends on a person's income. By law, public housing authorities must provide 75 percent of their vouchers to applicants whose incomes are less than 30 percent of the area's median income.

Locally, the median income is $34,100, meaning of family of three may earn no more than $10,400 yearly to receive a housing voucher.

IVHA represents all cities in the Valley except Calexico.

Staff Writer Rudy Yniguez can be reached at 337-3440.

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