Affordable Housing Development Programs Get State Funds

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Two Franklin County programs will have nearly $750,000 in additional resources to help create and encourage affordable housing thanks to state assistance, state Rep. Michael Stinziano says.

Without comment, the State Controlling Board approved Monday releasing $376,000 to the Ohio CDC Association to help create AmeriCorps VISTA positions to work on low-and moderate-income housing solutions.

The board also approved releasing $365,000 to the Coalition on Homelessness and Housing in Ohio (COHHIO) to be used in tenant outreach and youth housing and other programs.

“I’m pleased that these organizations will have the funding that they need to perform their vital services,” said Stinziano, a Columbus Democrat. “Decent, affordable housing is important to families and communities. It fulfills a basic human need for shelter but also contributes to the well-being of families and children and bolsters the economic vibrancy of neighborhoods and communities.”

According to state records, Columbus-based OCDCA will use $130,000 to secure placements for 10 full-time AmeriCorps/VISTA members to serve Community Development Corporations throughout the state with activities that include housing development, education and counseling, emergency home repair and supportive housing programs. The organization will endeavor to help with creating 300 affordable housing units and provide counseling to 625 people.

About $96,300 will be used for programs that provide low-income households with down payment assistance match and education services, according to state records.                       

State documents say that the Columbus-based COHHIO, a statewide, nonprofit organization dedicated to ending homelessness, will use about $165,000 for tenant outreach and housing advocacy programs that will benefit 1,835 people.

COHHIO will use $200,000 of the award for training and technical assistance to various organizations that work with homeless around the state. The Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, state documents say, will provide $165,000 in matching funds for this purpose.

Made up of six state lawmakers and a representative of the governor’s office, the State Controlling Board has the final say over some of the state’s larger spending projects.