Leahy: Vermont Nets $250,000 For Low-Income Housing Improvements

. . . NEK REAP Zone Status Helps To Propel VT To 2nd-Highest Awards In The Nation

(THURSDAY, Dec. 4, 2014) – Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Thursday joined in announcing $250,000 in awards to four organizations across Vermont to improve housing conditions for low-income rural residents.  Two of the grants were given preference because of the Leahy-led Rural Economic Area Partnership (REAP) Zone in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom -- a USDA Rural Development Designation recognizing the unique rural nature of a region that prioritizes the region’s grant applications.  Thanks in part to Vermont’s REAP Zone status, Vermont received more than nearly every other state in this round of awards, second only to California.  

Leahy said:  “These are community-strengthening investments that will make a real difference to families in Vermont.  The NEK’s REAP Zone continues to be a catalyst for investment in housing, infrastructure and economic growth in the region.”

USDA Rural Development New Hampshire and Vermont State Director Ted Brady said:  “These USDA grants enable low-income homeowners to address major safety, health and weatherization concerns in their homes, reducing the likelihood that they’ll lose their home or be forced to move. Vermont is fortunate that a provision of the 2014 Farm Bill authored by Senator Leahy gives organizations from the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont preference in receiving these funds.”

Leahy was instrumental in securing the NEK REAP Zone in 2000 and won an extension of the designation in this year’s Farm Bill.  The NEK’s REAP Zone status has been the key to securing ongoing investments in collaborative and citizen-led efforts to strengthen economic development.  These latest grants were awarded through the USDA Rural Development’s Housing Preservation Grant Program, which provides assistance to low-income homeowners to repair and rehabilitate their homes.  The grants were part of $4.8 million released by the Housing Preservation Grant Program on Thursday. 

The grants were awarded to Northeast Employment and Training Organization, Vermont Center for Independent Living, Southeastern Vermont Community Action and Gilman Housing Trust, Inc. to make weatherization and efficiency improvements to more than 60 low-income homes.

The grants are listed below:

Vermont Center for Independent Living:                    $25,000

Southeastern Vermont Community Action:                $25,000

Northeast Employment and Training Organization:   $100,000

Gilman Housing Trust, Inc.:                                        $100,000

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Press Contact:

David Carle 202-224-3693

Press Contact

Press Contact
David Carle: 202-224-3693