Draft city of Columbia Community Development Department 1225 Lady Street, Suite 102 Columbia, South Carolina 29201 Phone: (803) 545-3373 Fax: (803) 988-8014


AP-50 Geographic Distribution – 91.220(f)



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AP-50 Geographic Distribution – 91.220(f)


Description of the geographic areas of the entitlement (including areas of low-income and minority concentration) where assistance will be directed

CDBG funds are allocated to projects that benefit low and moderate income persons and/or areas. HOME funds are allocated to eligible beneficiaries (at or below 80% of AMI) throughout the corporate city limits.  HOPWA funds are allocated throughout a six-county area.  However, the City targets funds to those neighborhoods with the highest concentration of need for affordable housing and community and economic development. The City of Columbia has designated Booker Washington Heights, Eau Claire, Edisto Court, King/Lyon Streets, Brandon Acres/Cedar Terrace, Pinehurst Community Council, Belvedere and the Neighborhood Revitalization Strategy Area (NRSA) and as local redevelopment areas - maps for each area are included in this section of the Action Plan. 


Rationale for the priorities for allocating investments geographically

Discussion

This designation is done through local discussion with the neighborhood communities that desire to have federal funds make a positive impact in their communities.  Also, neighborhoods must be within a low- to moderate-income (at least 51%) census tract area as defined by HUD.  Although these areas are the focus of funding priorities, no one area is ranked higher than the other for funding consideration.  Funds may be used for eligible projects in any area within the City limits.  

In October 2015, the City requested modification of the Designated Redevelopment Area due to include the entire incorporated city limits due to the 2015 Flood Disaster. Recovery efforts include housing, infrastructure and the economy and are focused on the most severely affected neighborhoods and communities.

Affordable Housing

AP-55 Affordable Housing – 91.220(g)


Like many communities across the nation, affordability is by far the largest housing problem in Columbia. Census estimates show 55% of renters and 29% of homeowners with a mortgage as paying more than 30% of their income on housing costs (2013 ACS). In total, more than 16,000 households are financially overstretched due to housing. In total over 35% of households in Columbia are cost burdened.

HOME funds will be used to provide Affordable Housing loans at low interest rates for eligible homebuyers that are 80% and below the area median income level.  There will be an appropriate amount of match dollars leveraged.

The City of Columbia has developed new HOME Guidelines intended to encourage the effective use of funds through three (3) HOME eligibility program activities; Competitive Rental Housing Activity, non-competitive Rental Housing Activity, and non-competitive Homeownership Activity.  


One Year Goals for the Number of Households to be Supported

Homeless

200

Non-Homeless

110

Special-Needs

70

Total

380

Table - One Year Goals for Affordable Housing by Support Requirement

One Year Goals for the Number of Households Supported Through

Rental Assistance

20

The Production of New Units

45

Rehab of Existing Units

40

Acquisition of Existing Units

10

Total

115

Table - One Year Goals for Affordable Housing by Support Type

Discussion

The City of Columbia Community Development Department continues to prioritize the creation of quality, affordable housing as an integral component of its development programs.  Over the last five years, the City created partnerships with several local banks (BB&T, NBSC, First Citizens, South Carolina Bank and Trust, Security Federal and Palmetto Citizens Federal Credit Union) to produce over $71 million in financing.  The City will continue this initiative and seek to development new partnerships with local lenders for leveraged private dollars.

The City revised its City Lender I program to lower the down payment to $1,000 with a maximum loan of $151,000.  Additionally, the City Employee Lender program provides up to 25% financing for a home loan.

 

The City of Columbia will continue Maintenance Assistance Program or (M.A.P) for qualified homeowners with up to $15,000 for a forgivable loan over 5 years for energy efficiency repairs. No new funding will be allocated to this program; however the program will carry over into FY2016-17 until completed. Homeowners must reside in the designated targeted redevelopment areas in the City.  


AP-60 Public Housing 91.220(h)


Introduction

Actions planned during the next year to address the needs to public housing

The Columbia Housing Authority is an autonomous agency, designated by Internal Revenue Service as a 509(a) tax-exempt public charity.  Its mission is to meet the emerging affordable housing needs of low to moderate-income individuals and families in Columbia and Richland County while promoting self-reliance and improving their quality of life. 

  The City of Columbia will continue to partner with Columbia Housing Authority to provide safe, affordable housing.  The City supports Columbia Housing Authority’s plan for homeownership education and counseling and the use of Section 8 vouchers for homeownership.  Columbia Housing Authority plans to increase homeownership with 25 new homebuyer families.  The City also supports the Housing Authority’s use of Continuum of Care Supportive Housing Program funds for 25 units of permanent supportive housing for homeless persons.

The City of Columbia supports Columbia Housing Authority’s plan to increase resident participation in the Resident’s Executive Council by 50% and increase the number of employed residents by 10%.

In May 2016, CHA is opened its waiting list for two housing programs and accepted applications:

1. The Public Housing Program for Elderly Housing public housing apartments only for the Marion Street Highrise (1930 Marion Street) and the Oak-Read Highrise (2211 Read Street). Applicant for must be 62 years old or older. All persons in the household must be over 62. Income requirements: less than $35,950.

2. The Project Based Housing Choice Voucher Program (PBV).


  • Village at Rivers Edge (McQueen St., opening May, 2016) 2 and 3 bedroom units

  • Gable Oaks (901 Colleton St., opening summer, 2016) 1, 2, and 3 bedroom units

  • c. Lorick Place (West Ave., opening 2017) 2 and 3 bedroom units

For this PBV Program, the Voucher is connected to the apartment and not used at any other location.
Actions to encourage public housing residents to become more involved in management and participate in homeownership

The City of Columbia is recommending funding ($53,500) to CHA for its “Learning to Build Houses” Program for FY 2016-17. This program will allow youth from Richland School District One to learn construction skills necessary for them to become employable as skilled construction labor. In addition, the City has made a financial commitment for the demolition of Gonzales Gardens utilizing approximately $1 million in Neighborhood Investment Program (NIP) funding.



If the PHA is designated as troubled, describe the manner in which financial assistance will be provided or other assistance

Discussion

CHA is a High-Performing Housing Authority (Score 92 out of 100). It is ranked third in the nation for best public housing practices.




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