GLOVERSVILLE - Homeowners and landlords can apply for a grant to make repairs to real property in an older residential area of the city.
The $400,000 approved by the Common Council on Tuesday will allow 18 to 20 residential properties to be renovated, city grant consultant Nick Zabawsky said. The area covered is on the north end of East Fulton Street, both sides of Washington Street and North Judson Street and along Fox Street.
Council members voted Tuesday to approve Zabawsky's request, which is part of the process required to receive the funding for the Community Development Block Grant.
The money is earmarked by federal officials, then approved at the next level for state officials to pass along the funds to city and local authorities. The projects are managed locally. Public hearings also are a requirement.
Over the last 20 years, Zabawsky said, more than 400 residential properties have been renovated and repaired.
"This neighborhood certainly qualified," he said.
Renovations were made to homes in this area about 12 years ago, Zabawsky said, and more housing improvement attention is needed in the area.
The area qualifies for the block grant funds because more than 50 percent of the housing is substandard and more than 60 percent of residents there are deemed, by federal standards, to be of low income.
To qualify, a person's gross income, for a family of one, must be between $22,000 and $23,000. For a family of four, the gross annual income range cannot exceed $45,000. Rental properties can be eligible, too. The landlord, whether he or she lives in the apartment building, can receive a matching grant. The landlord would match 50 percent of the approved grant money.
The project money comes with some caveats, Zabawksy noted. Homes cannot be spruced up and "flipped," or resold at a profit.
This is "an opportunity for people fix up their neighborhoods," he said. "It's not an opportunity for people to get rich quick off the grant."
If a landlord applies, repairs made through the grant cannot result in higher rents for tenants.
To let more residents and property owners know about the grants and the application process, the council voted to update the city's website with the information.
Announcements regarding awarding of the grants will be made in September, Zabawsky said. Funding would be ready for work to begin next spring.
"Once we get the grant, they give us two years to fund it," he said.
For more information on a grant application, check the city's website at www.cityofgloversville.com or with city officials.