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Flint Mayor Neeley proposes $5 million for home repairs

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(The Center Square) – The City of Flint administration proposed spending $5 million in American Rescue Plan Act funds for home repair programs for Flint residents.

These allocations include $1.5 million to Metro Community Development, $1.5 million to Habitat for Humanity, and $800,000 to Genesee County Community Action Resource Department to provide home repair services directly to Flint residents citywide.

Additional allocations to Court Street Village include $175,000 for painting houses and $150,000 for repairing roof in the Central Park and Fairfield Village neighborhoods. About $875,000 would provide property tax, water bill, and homeowners insurance assistance.

“Flint families have been asking for help with critical home repairs, and today we have a message of hope that help is on the way,” Flint Mayor Sheldon Neeley said in a statement. “If the Flint City Council approves these allocations, the administration is prepared to move swiftly to implement contracts with service providers and make these critical resources available for Flint residents. These home repair programs will improve quality of life for the most vulnerable members of our community by making Flint homes safe places where families can thrive.”

ARPA-funded home repair programs aim to assist residents in the rehabilitation of their homes, as well as assist residents in avoiding foreclosure.

Flint is trying to stop a population outflow. In 1960, Flint boasted nearly 197,000 residents, but in 2023, that number has dipped to 80,000.

It’s unclear if the Flint City Council will approve the proposal. A lawsuit filed by Flint City Council members against Neeley over the American Rescue Plan Advisory Committee may complicate this proposal.

The ARPA Community Advisory Committee has completed its work and has submitted all funding recommendations to the City of Flint administration. These are recommendations only; the committee itself has no decision-making authority. The administrative team is reviewing and developing resolutions to send before the Flint City Council based on the committee’s recommendations, with some modifications.

Residents receiving support through these programs must meet eligibility criteria, and the priority for support will be based on the lowest income and/or greatest need. Residents must provide evidence of residence at the property for at least one year with a copy of their deed or a utility bill.

Residents must also provide documentation of income at or below 300% of the federal poverty level, which is the federally mandated ARPA household income limit. Finally, residents must be current on all Flint property taxes and water bills or have completed an application for the Michigan Homeowner Assistance Fund.

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