Carper Joins USDA Rural Development to Highlight Affordable Rural Rental Housing Funding

SEAFORD, Del. – USDA Rural Development State Director Bill McGowan and U.S. Senator Tom Carper today joined community-based non-profit housing organizations at Chandler Heights, an affordable apartment complex for families in Seaford, to highlight a $152,492  federal grant award from the Rural Community Development Initiative Program to the National Council on Agriculture Life and Labor Research Fund, Inc.

“This is a great program that can do many things to support locally-based development strategies,” Dr. McGowan said. “Primarily it is available to community-based development organizations to promote economic growth in low-income rural communities. We are lucky to have NCALL as a community economic development partner promoting affordable housing, improved communities and sustainable development. It is one more tool in the box to ensure that families, seniors and those with disabilities have access to a home that they can afford.” 

“This competitive grant will help NCALL work with Better Homes here in Seaford and with Millsboro Housing for Progress to bring decent, affordable housing within reach for more Delawareans,” Sen. Carper said. “It will create construction jobs during the renovation and provide even more affordable housing for our local workforce. That’s a real win-win.”

“For families struggling to make ends meet, high rental costs can be an impossible burden,” Sen. Coons said. “NCALL and its community partners do tremendous work to make secure, affordable housing a reality for thousands in Delaware. This grant will help them reach more Delaware families and continue investing in our growing rural communities.”

“Affordable housing is a critical ingredient for successful, thriving communities,” Rep. John Carney said. “This grant will allow NCALL to continue their great work to make affordable housing accessible to all who live in Delaware’s rural areas.” 

NCALL is a nonprofit organization based in Dover and has been serving the Delmarva Peninsula since 1976. The organization specializes in housing development, education and lending. NCALL, serving as the intermediary, will use the grant to provide technical assistance and training to Better Homes of Seaford and Millsboro Housing for Progress. These organizations will help preserve rental housing complexes like Chandler Heights II, owned by Better Homes of Seaford with 24 three bedroom family units, and Millsboro Village II, owned by Millsboro Housing for Progress with 26 family units. The funding can also help with the development of new rental housing properties.

NCALL will assist both nonprofit housing organizations in addressing the many housing development challenges and obstacles, from predevelopment through construction and rent-up, to mutually overcome them and proceed with the housing development’s needs. 

Last year, USDA Rural Development returned $196 million to rural Delaware.  It has more than 40 loan, grant, and technical assistance programs.  The 2014 Farm Bill brings renewed support for community economic development, including financing for investments in broadband, telecommunications, distance learning and telemedicine, entrepreneurship, and business development and growth.

President Obama’s plan for rural America has brought about historic investment and resulted in stronger rural communities.  Under the President’s leadership, these investments in housing, community facilities, businesses and infrastructure have empowered rural America to continue leading the way – strengthening America’s economy, small towns and rural communities.