CARBONDALE — A housing study currently being conducted on the northeast side of Carbondale will help city staff bring rehabilitation grants to the area.

Community Development Assistance Program (CDAP) grants, awarded by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, provide up to $45,000 per household to improve the homes of low-income residents.

Senior Planner Travis Taylor said the city has a long history of administering the CDAP grants. In the 1990s, staff secured funding for projects in the northeast neighborhood, and the past few CDAP grants were administered in northwest Carbondale.

“So now that we’ve hit the northwest, we’re going back to the northeast to target homes in need of rehabilitation and homeowners who need assistance,” Taylor said.

The grants “provide residents with safe and sanitary living conditions and help to stabilize neighborhoods and affordable housing in the community,” according to the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity website.

“The $45,000 is used to bring the home up to building code, so it hits first and foremost the basic safety kind of items — so heating and air, roof, flooring, making sure that the house is livable and inhabitable, and then from there we can start to expand and make other improvements to the home as the money is available,” Taylor said.

Some homes won’t require the full $45,000, Taylor noted.

In order to determine a target area for the grants, staff will be conducting door-to-door surveys in northeast Carbondale from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. for the next week.

The survey takes about five minutes to complete and focuses on demographics, household income and the condition of homes. Every home in the area must be surveyed. 

The funds are Community Development Block Grant monies that flow from the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development to the state.

“They dole out the funds competitively to communities and organizations that apply through their CDAP grants,” Taylor said.

Once the city identifies the specific target area within the northeast neighborhood and proves that there is an adequate number of homes that need rehabilitation within the area, homeowners will be asked to complete applications. Those applications will be ranked in order of need.

The city hopes to rehabilitate about 10 homes in total, Taylor said.

“Funding is by no means guaranteed, but I would say that as long as we put our best foot forward here and get a good application together and are able to get the surveys that we need to submit the application, then we have a very good chance to get the funding,” Taylor said.

Taylor said the city will apply for the grants in December and hopefully receive funding by spring or summer.

“I would invite residents to contact me if they have any questions. Even if they’re not in the target area, the city has other funding available for home rehabilitation, although it’s in more limited scope than these comprehensive and substantive grants we receive from the state,” Taylor said.

Taylor can be reached at 618-457-3233 or at ttaylor@ci.carbondale.il.us.

janis.esch@thesouthern.com

618-351-5082

On Twitter: @janis_eschSI

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Reporter

Janis Esch is a reporter covering Carbondale and SIU.

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