Island County adopts affordable housing program

Island County has joined forces with Whatcom and Skagit counties to bring more affordable housing options to the region.

Island County commissioners agreed last month to become part of the HOME Investment Partner Program, an organization that will collectively become eligible for grants issued through the Department of Housing and Urban Development, according to Catherine Reid, Island County housing program coordinator.

“This can provide rental assistance or the development of affordable housing, meeting our goals of ending homelessness,” Reid said.

Reid said the HOME group will make their application in the coming months and should be eligible for funding next year.

Skagit County will serve as lead agency, but an advisory committee will be created with representatives from all participating counties and municipalities which includes Langley, Coupeville and Oak Harbor.

The program can fund a wide range of activities including building, buying, and/or rehabilitating affordable housing for rent or homeownership or providing direct rental assistance to low-income people.

HOME is the largest federal block grant to state and local governments designed exclusively to create affordable housing for low-income households.


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