Bethany J. Royer
MIAMI COUNTY — Good news for local public housing, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) recently announced nearly $1.8 billion awarded to public housing authorities in all 50 states, with Ohio the recipient of $75 million for FY2014 and Miami County roughly $129,000.
These funds will aid in capital improvements such as roof replacements, for one 40-unit in Piqua and two units in Troy (One designated for elderly and another for family) or 127 units total across Miami County, according to the Miami Metropolitan Housing Authority.
The funding comes after a capital needs study regarding HUD’s Public Housing Program and the need to build, repair, renovate or modernize the public housing in their respective communities. Data collection included on-site inspections, developing a cost file and a survey of public housing associations.
Observable repairs were broken down to five actions: No action, minor action, moderate action, major action and replacement required and looked at everything from sidewalks to sanitary lines, exterior stairs to lighting, boilers and heating water circulation, elevators and HVAC units, to name a few. According to the study, if an inspector determined three or more kitchen components required significant repairs or replacement, the entire kitchen would be listed as requiring an upgrade. With consistency of inspections across the 48 contiguous states determined by training sessions and handbooks, and broken down to northeast, midwest, south and west regions.
Funds may also be used to make energy-efficient upgrades or replace old plumbing and electric systems, according to the press release, with the largest contributors being kitchens, baths and interior doors, and the second largest contributors to building architecture such as windows, exterior doors and roofs. All defined as capital needs for extensive improvements unlike routine maintenance, and given the program is losing 10,000 public housing units each year due to disrepair, the funds are critical to maintain current structures and protect federal investments in the program.
Bethany J. Royer may be reached at (937) 773-2721 or on Twitter @TheDailyCall