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USDA Invests $297,929 to Impact New Jersey and Improve Equitable Access to Housing through Housing Preservation

Name
Emily Cannon
Release Date
Nov 18, 2021

Investment is part of $86 Million Announced Nationwide

 

WASHINGTON, Nov. 18, 2021 – U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced the Department is investing $86 million to improve equitable access to jobs, business opportunities, education, housing and health care for people who live and work in rural areas. The investments are part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to ensure that people living in rural communities have equitable access to the infrastructure and opportunities often taken for granted by people living in urban and suburban areas. As a part of this nationwide announcement, two organizations in New Jersey will receive a total of $297,929.

“Regardless of where they live, their race, ethnicity or gender, or the size of the town in which they live, all people must have access to good jobs, decent housing, clean water and good job opportunities,” Vilsack said. “This is foundational to a healthy society and stable communities. Today’s announcements build on the historic investments made possible by the American Rescue Plan Act signed into law by President Biden to ensure equity during a time when people living in underserved places are suffering the most. The investments I am announcing today will go a long way toward helping America ‘Build Back Better’ toward a just and more equitable society.”

 

USDA Rural Development Acting New Jersey State Director Brandon R. Pfeilmeier said, “This important investment will help to ensure New Jersey residents have access to quality housing by providing funds for home repair, renovations, and handicap accessibility, resulting in a safe, quality place to call home.”

 

New Jersey communities will benefit from a total of $297,929 as follows:

  • The Borough of Hopatcong is receiving a Housing Preservation Grant in the amount of $148,964. This Rural Development investment will be used to provide safe and efficient housing within the financial reach of Borough of Hopatcong homeowners whose household income is below the HUD Low/Moderate Income level 80 percent of the County Median Income by family size. The funds will be utilized in the Borough to cater to major rehabilitative projects. The Borough will provide approximately $10,000 to the eligible applicants. Housing Preservation Grant funds are used to assist homeowners with the cost of repair and rehabilitation to remove or correct health and safety hazards to comply with applicable development standards or codes, or to make needed repairs to improve the general living condition of the residents, including improved accessibility for a person with a disability. The USDA, Rural Development grant funds for FY 2021 will be assisting approximately 14 households.  Funds will be leveraged with the Small Cities Program in the amount of $250,000.

  • Gloucester County Department of Economic Development will receive a Housing Preservation Grant in the amount of $148,965. This Rural Development investment will be used to provide safe and efficient housing within the financial reach to county homeowners whose household income is below the HUD Low/Moderate Income level 80 percent of the County Median Income by family size. The funds will be utilized in Clayton, East Greenwich Twp., Elk Twp., Franklin Twp., Greenwich Twp., Harrison Twp., Logan Twp., Mantua Twp., National Park, Newfield, Paulsboro, South Harrison, Swedesboro, Woolwich Twp. and a portion of Monroe Twp. Housing Preservation Grant funds are used to assist homeowners with the cost of repair and rehabilitation to remove or correct health and safety hazards to comply with applicable development standards or codes, or to make needed repairs to improve the general living condition of the residents, including improved accessibility for a person with a disability.

Background:

Vilsack highlighted 218 investments that USDA is making in six programs specifically designed to help people and businesses in rural areas. These programs include Tribal College Initiative Grants, Rural Community Development Initiative Grants, Housing Preservation Grants, Delta Health Care Grants, Socially Disadvantaged Group Grants and Water and Waste Disposal Grants.

The funding will help more than 425,000 people in 46 states, Puerto Rico and the Western Pacific. They reflect the many ways USDA Rural Development helps rural residents, businesses and communities address economic development, infrastructure and social service needs. They will help low-income people make health and safety repairs to their homes. They will help build and improve water and wastewater infrastructure for people living in U.S. communities along the Mexico border. They will help rural business owners in the Mississippi Delta get access to capital and business development assistance. They also will help colleges that serve Tribal populations upgrade campus buildings and services.

Under the Biden-Harris Administration, Rural Development provides loans and grants to help expand economic opportunities, create jobs and improve the quality of life for millions of Americans in rural areas. This assistance supports infrastructure improvements; business development; housing; community facilities such as schools, public safety and health care; and high-speed internet access in rural, Tribal and high-poverty areas. For more information, visit www.rd.usda.gov. USDA Rural Development is prioritizing projects that will support key priorities under the Biden-Harris Administration to help rural America build back better and stronger. Key priorities include combatting the COVID-19 pandemic; addressing the impacts of climate change; and advancing equity in rural America. For more information, visit www.rd.usda.gov/priority-points. If you’d like to subscribe to USDA Rural Development updates, visit our GovDelivery subscriber page.

USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. In the Biden-Harris Administration, USDA is transforming America’s food system with a greater focus on more resilient local and regional food production, fairer markets for all producers, ensuring access to safe, healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and streams of income for farmers and producers using climate-smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clean energy capabilities in rural America, and committing to equity across the Department by removing systemic barriers and building a workforce more representative of America. To learn more, visit www.usda.gov.

 

 

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