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Committee says ‘Yes’ to HSA, ‘No’ to Tri-County

Two proposals to seek federal tax credits for housing projects in Bellefontaine received mixed support from the City Council’s Safety Committee during a Tuesday meeting.

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Tri-County Community Action’s proposal to build a seniors-only development off Sloan Boulevard near Township Road 55 did not receive the committee’s support with Chairman Peter DeSomma and Councilman Allan Hadley voting against the idea.

Mr. Hadley, though, sided with Councilman Jerry Pitzer and voted to recommend Housing Services Alliance Inc.’s concept to develop an apartment complex for working families off the end of Kristina Drive.

The committee’s vote is not binding on the rest of council.

HSA’s request for the council’s blessing will now move ahead via the Safety Committee, but not Tri-County’s bid.

Tri-County board member Anthony Ehsermann said the board will make “a business decision” on whether or not to proceed with the application.

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Both Tri-County and HSA hope to apply for federal tax credits administered by the state to fund the projects.

Neither entity needs council’s blessing to move ahead, but a letter of support can provide critical evaluation points for applications made to the state.

Both projects would provide housing for people who make enough or have retirement income to cover monthly rents.

Tri-County has proposed a $5.5 million project to build a 48-unit senior housing development on a 9.6-acre site. The pocket neighborhood design would not permit children nor grandchildren to live in the units.

Rent would be around $540 a month for each of the 14 single-bedroom units and a little more for each of the 34 two-bedroom units. Residents would have to undergo background and credit checks.

HSA wants to build a 40-unit, multi-family apartment development off Kristina Drive. Each garden-style unit would have three bedrooms, 2 1/2 baths and an attached garage.

It would cost about $6 million and rents would be no more than $765 per month.

HSA’s Robert Bender said it would not adversely impact the neighborhood as it would be at the end of the drive.

It would target working families whose main-income earner is making between $8 to $18 an hour. These are families making too much to qualify for public housing assistance, but not enough to buy a home. ...

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