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Says projects underscore need for range of housing options to assist those experiencing homelessness
Gov. Kathy Hochul announced more than $13.3 million has been awarded to help expand and preserve emergency and permanent supportive housing for individuals and families experiencing homelessness. Funding was awarded to projects that will create 51 apartments in the Bronx and a new 80-bed emergency shelter for families in Erie County. Funding was also awarded to help make repairs to existing emergency shelters in Oneida and Chautauqua counties.
"These diverse projects will expand access to affordable housing, while helping provide safe, secure homes for some of our most vulnerable New Yorkers," Hochul said. "Once completed, these structures will help bring stability to the lives of our fellow New Yorkers experiencing homelessness – helping them build a foundation for a better future."
The funding comes through the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance's Homeless Housing and Assistance Program. The fiscal year 2023 enacted state budget included the governor's $25 billion, five-year housing plan to increase housing supply by creating or preserving 100,000 affordable homes statewide, including 10,000 with supportive services for vulnerable populations, plus the electrification of an additional 50,000 homes.
The governor's FY 2024 executive budget includes the New York Housing Compact, a statewide strategy to address New York's housing crisis by building 800,000 new homes over the next decade to meet the historic shortage. The executive budget continues $128 million in capital funding for the Homeless Housing and Assistance Program.
The projects awarded funding include The Salvation Army, awarded $10 million to help construct 32 units including 80 beds of emergency housing for homeless families in Buffalo. This new shelter will replace the Salvation Army's existing 77-bed shelter located on another parcel, so no residents will be displaced during construction. The first floor of the new building will have administrative and support services offices, and a laundry facility.
The Salvation Army of Erie County Director of Operations Maj. Annette Lock said, "The Salvation Army in Buffalo is grateful for the opportunity to partner with Gov. Hochul, the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance, and our community supporters to build the Hope on Main Emergency Family Shelter. This facility will provide a safe, secure, hopeful space where vulnerable families will not only have a warm bed and nutritious meals, but can access a full array of services needed to lift themselves from crisis to stability. Funding for the construction of this new center from the Homeless Housing and Assistance Program will ensure the continuation of the Salvation Army's 60-year tradition of supporting under-resources adults and children in Erie County on their journey to finding permanent, stable housing."
OTDA Commissioner Daniel W. Tietz said, "The Homeless Housing and Assistance Program plays an important role in the development of permanent supportive housing, but also provides capital funding that is vital to constructing, rehabilitating and repairing emergency shelters.”
The Homeless Housing Assistance Program provides capital grants and loans to not-for-profit corporations, charitable and religious organizations, and municipalities to acquire, construct or rehabilitate housing for persons who are unable to secure adequate housing without special assistance. The grants are awarded through a competitive process by the New York State Homeless Housing and Assistance Corp., a public benefit corporation staffed by the OTDA.
Through this program, New York state has appropriated more than $1.5 billion toward the development of supportive housing. In total, the program has created more than 25,000 units of housing to support individuals and families experiencing homelessness.