By Sam Wildow
TROY — Troy City Council’s Community and Economic Development Committee recommended moving forward with the creation of a Residential Exterior Housing Improvement Loan Program during a committee meeting on Monday.
The committee recommended moving forward with establishing a Residential Exterior Housing Improvement Loan Program using $150,000 of funds provided by the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). The Residential Exterior Housing Improvement Loan Program would provide three options to households in Troy, depending on their income levels, to do exterior work to their homes, such as work to roofs, siding, ADA compliant structures, gutters, garages, and more.
According to Patrick Titterington, director of Public Service and Safety, the program will:
• Provide financial and technical assistance to homeowners to improve the exterior of their property to meet the Troy Property Maintenance Code;
• Preserve the existing housing stock in terms of aesthetics and property values;
• Eliminate existing or potential blighting influences and their “spill-over effect” to adjacent properties; and,
• Encourage an increased sense of responsibility with regard to property maintenance.
“Improvements to the exterior not only improve the property itself, but also the neighborhood,” Titterington said. “Additionally, if we were to get into interior type of work — such as plumbing, electrical, mechanical — then we have to hire outside inspectors that can cost anywhere from $1,000 to $4,000 depending on the specialty and the number of the inspections that have to be done, which, of course, takes away from the amount available to the loan.”
There are three funding options based on income levels. Titterington explained the intent of this new program is to supplement the city’s allocation of Community Housing Impact and Preservation (CHIP) Program funds. The city will first utilize CHIP funds with income-qualified applicants first before then using funds from the city’s Residential Exterior Housing Improvement Loan Program.
Option one for the city’s Residential Exterior Housing Improvement Loan Program includes the following:
• Income limits of 80 percent or less of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) estimates of median family household income levels with adjustments for the number of people living in the household in the city of Troy;
• A minimum loan of $5,000;
• A maximum loan of $20,000;
• A zero-percent interest rate;
• A 10-year, non-forgiveable loan; and,
• No match required.
Option two will be open to Troy residents who are between 80.1 to 99.9% of HUD median income estimates. Projects costing between $5,000 and $40,000 are eligible, but a 25% match is required and the loan will come with a prime interest rate. It is also a 10-year, non-forgiveable loan.
Option two was originally meant to have a 50% match, but the committee decided to lower it to a 25% match following a discussion.
Option three will be open to Troy residents with greater than 100% of HUD median income estimates, will be for projects costing between $5,000-$10,000, and will have a 50% match required. Those will be five-year, non-forgiveable loans that will also have a prime interest rate.
The loans are non-forgiveable due to the city aiming to create a revolving loan fund for the exterior maintenance issues.
Also on Monday, the Community and Economic Development Committee recommended approval of an annexation request from Concord Township referred to as the Blackmore-Hill Annexation, which would annex 12.524 acres on the west side of Barnhart Road to the city.
The Finance Committee then recommended declaring a number of items as surplus to then be sold on GovDeals.com. The items include a 2014 Ford Explorer, a 1994 mower, and over 100 parking meters.
The Personnel Committee then recommended eliminating the position of assistant development director as the Development Department continues to re-organize.
The Troy City Council has not officially approved those items as those items were discussed and recommended in committee meetings. The next regular city council meeting will be held on Sept. 7 at 7 p.m. in council chambers on the second floor of City Hall, located at 100 S. Market St.