MOUNT VERNON — The annual Mount Vernon and Knox County Local Housing Advisory Committee meeting and public hearing for Community Development Block Grants and other public development programs took place Thursday afternoon at the Knox County Commissioners’ Office. Amy Shocken of Community Development Consultants of Ohio conducted the meeting to discuss programs for 2012 as well as housing needs and local application opportunities. Attending the meeting were representatives from numerous local organizations and agencies.
The HAC annually identifies gaps in housing services of the underserved low- to moderate-income population in the area. Once these gaps are identified, the HAC will recommend certain Community Housing Improvement Program activities that will increase service to area residents. Shocken explained that funding sources for eligible activities are divided into categories of primary housing activities and supportive activities. Primary activities include various rehabilitation efforts, home repair, new housing construction and tenant-based rental assistance. Supportive activities include clearance/demolition, acquisition, relocation and code enforcement.
Shocken shared information on a $500,000 Community Housing Improvement Program grant which the city is looking at securing funds through, concentrating on projects in the west end of the city. Knox County is also applying for a $300,000 grant for development in the Columbus Road/South Vernon neighborhood for projects such as sidewalks, bike paths, etc.