USDA Rural Development, Kansas Housing Resources Corporation, and Northwest Kansas Housing Inc., celebrated the grand opening of Pine Village, a housing development in Rexford. Pine Village consists of 10, three-bedroom, one-bath duplexes that are available for local farm laborers to rent.
USDA Rural Development provided $1.47 million in financing for Pine Village. The Agency’s Farm Labor Housing program provides loans and grants to increase the number of housing units for domestic farm laborers. Farm Labor Housing loans and grants are provided to buy, build, improve, or repair housing for farm laborers and can be made to farmers, association of farmers, family farm corporations, Indian tribes, nonprofit organizations, public agencies, and associations of farmworkers.
“Affordable housing continues as one of the most significant challenges plaguing our rural communities, stated USDA Rural Development State Director Patty Clark. “By leveraging federal assets with state assets and local leadership, rural regions can find solutions to the chronic lack of workforce housing.”
The Kansas Housing Resources Corporation provided Northwest Kansas Housing, Inc., with a $400,000 grant from the Moderate Income Housing Program through the City of Rexford. The program offers grants and/or loans, including the development of multi-family rental units, single-family for-purchase homes, and water, sewer and street extensions.
Northwest Kansas Housing, Inc., is a non-profit community housing development organization serving 24 counties in Northwest Kansas and has constructed 105 single-family homes or duplexes in the region. The non-profit strives to develop affordable housing for low and moderate income families.
“Small, rural communities in Kansas, such as Rexford, oftentimes lack adequate housing for the agricultural employees working in those communities,” said Loyce Schamberger, Executive Director for Northwest Kansas Housing, Inc. “We utilized USDA’s Farm Labor Housing Program because there are several agricultural employers in the area, and the demand for housing is increasing. Currently, we have 11 applications for the 10 available units at Pine Village.”
USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, administers and manages housing, business and community infrastructure programs through a national network of state and local offices. Rural Development has an active portfolio of more than $206.2 billion in loans and loan guarantees. These programs are designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents, farmers and ranchers and improve the quality of life in rural America.