The Oakland County Community & Home Improvement Division released its 2015 guide, detailing how nearly $10 million in federal funds will be spent revitalizing neighborhoods, fixing up homes and providing residents with other vital programs and community services.
The 12-page guide gives an overview of the division and lists the services and programs available to residents such as free housing counseling from certified housing professionals, emergency housing support, home improvement assistance and programming for disadvantaged youth, the disabled and senior citizens.
“I applaud the fine work carried out by the staff of our Community & Home Improvement division,” County Executive L. Brooks Patterson said. “From helping fund a food program for seniors to making needed improvements in a community park, these programs and services touch residents of all ages throughout the county in so many ways.”
The guide provides a list of the proposed community development block grant allocations to participating communities in Oakland County. The 2015 proposed allocations, which must be approved by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, include:
- $760,004 for demolition and clearing of blighted homes in Pontiac
- $35,891 to retrofit the Highland Township Hall to make it ADA compliant
- $23,727 for improvements to the Edna Burton Senior Center in Brandon Township
- $30,301 to make recreational facilities ADA compliant in Wixom
- $107,000 to retrofit existing facilities in Redwood Park in Troy
Other programs include free counseling on reverse mortgages and tenants’ rights. Low-income households can get interest-free loans to help pay for needed house repairs. Communities benefit through increased accessibility to public facilities, services for abused spouses and preventing homelessness.
Community & Home Improvement, which is a division of the Department of Economic Development & Community Affairs, has helped residents with their housing needs and supported community development projects for more than 40 years.
Copies of the guide are available online at http://www.advantageoakland.com/CPHA/CPHAHousing/Pages/CPHADivision.aspx or by calling the Community & Home Improvement Division at (248) 858-0493.
Patterson said the division is developing its five-year Consolidated Plan and identifying how the county will invest $5 million annually in Community Development Block Grant, HOME Investment Partnerships Program and Emergency Solutions Grant funds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
He said county residents who want a say on how the $5 million should be spent for various housing and community development projects including neighborhood improvements or home foreclosure prevention will get three chances to be heard.
There are three public focus group sessions at the county’s Executive Office Building Conference Center, 2100 Pontiac Lake Road in Waterford:
- HOUSING – Tuesday, May 19 from 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
- COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT – Thursday, May 21 p.m. from 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
- PUBLIC SERVICES – Tuesday, June 2 from 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
The sessions are free and open to the public.