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Seven Hall County homeowners are in the final stages of approval to receive grant funding for much-needed repairs and upgrades to their residences, bringing their homes into compliance with County building codes.
"These are people who want to correct code violations in their home but may not have the financial resources to do so," said Hall County District 4 Commissioner Jeff Stowe. "Rather than solely issuing citations, the County is providing information about grant funding which can reduce those citations, calls and neighborhood blight."
The process to identify areas of Hall County in need of grant funding for community and housing revitalization began in September 2015 when various Hall County and City of Gainesville officials met with members of the community to discuss the needs of affordable housing development, among other topics. As a result of that meeting, the Georgia Department of Community Affairs' (DCA's) Community HOME Investment Program, or CHIP, was identified as a funding source to assist governments, nonprofits and public housing authorities in addressing those needs.
The Hall County homes that are in the process to receive CHIP funding are located off Athens Highway in Gainesville, in Flowery Branch and in the East Hall area.
Carrie Ivey is one of the homeowners to potentially receive grant funds. She said her 1972 home has been in need of repair for years but she was not financially able to make the upgrades. When her husband passed away in February, the need only grew.
"I had been praying about it, asking the Lord to send someone to help," Ivey said. "This truly is like a Godsend to me."
In order to receive CHIP funds, Ivey and the other homeowners had to apply and qualify through DCA, a process that began approximately nine months ago. Repairs to the homes include HVAC upgrades, new roofing, foundation repairs and window replacement. Work is expected to begin in early 2017.
"Hall County is currently applying for additional grant funding for both reconstruction/new construction and neighborhood revitalization so that even more citizens will be able to benefit from these programs," said Stowe.
Any homeowner interested in applying for future CHIP funds is asked to contact Joy Walker with the Hall County Financial Services Department at 770-535-8274.