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Wilson County receives grant to assist low-income homeowners

Angie Mayes • Oct 16, 2018 at 6:44 PM

The Wilson County Commission passed five resolutions at its meeting Monday night designed to increase home rehabilitation housing opportunities for low- and extremely low-income residents who live outside of cities within Wilson County.

The Federal Grant Program, HOME, will allow Wilson County to use grant funds for housing rehabilitation and improvements. The county will receive $500,000 for the projects, but a local firm will distribute the funds.

Funds may not be used for public housing development, public housing operating costs or for Section 8 tenant-based assistance. Funds also can’t be used to provide non-federal matching contributions for other federal programs, for operating subsidies for rental housing or for activities under the Low-Income Housing Preservation Act.

All housing developed with HOME funds must serve low- and very low-income families. Homeownership assistance must be to families with incomes at or less than 80 percent of the area median income. The resident must own the house and live there one year before eligibility starts, according to Jim Kidwell with the county mayor’s office. The exact amount of income will not be known until a public meeting in December.

There will be no cost to the county, and the administrative part of the grant is built into the funding, Kidwell said. The grant is federal money that is regulated by the Tennessee Housing and Development Agency.

Among the areas the grant will pay are for lead paint inspection services. Resolution Inc. and Todd Kennedy were named as lead inspection companies, as required by the grant.

Community Development Partners LLC was named to administer the various funds for the grant. Cauthen and Associates and Crossroads Home Inspection were named the Housing inspection services to work with the county through the grant.

Those interested in applying must fill out an application. Since it’s in the early stages of the home grant, applications will be accepted at a community meeting in December.

“When we get everything from THDA approved, we’ll have a public hearing, which will be advertised in local paper,” said Jackie Smith with Community Development Partners. “We’ll explain it to those who show up and will have the applications there at that time.”

The commissioners also recognized five people or groups during the meeting. They were Agnatious “Pat” Patterson Jr., Kathy Leedy, the Wilson Emergency Management Agency Ambulance Strike Team, the WEMA and Lebanon Fire Department Swift Water Rescue Team and Mt. Juliet fire Deputy Chief Chris Allen.

Patterson, 92, died Aug. 30. A World War II veteran, he was based in Guam and received a Bronze Star, Silver Star and two Purple Hearts during this service. He also served the nation as a Democratic National Convention delegate in 1950s and 1960. In addition, he served the state and county in various positions. He retired as a cattle farmer in Wilson County.

Leedy, an American Legion Auxiliary member 20 years, was instrumental to fund a post in Mt. Juliet. She was president of that post for seven years and has served the auxiliary in different positions over the years.

The WEMA Ambulance Strike Team went to North Carolina to assist local authorities after Hurricane Florence hit the area.

WEMA and Lebanon Fire Department Swift Water Rescue Team traveled to South Carolina to help with needs after Hurricane Florence. Allen served on the logistics support team in South Carolina after Hurricane Florence.

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