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CDBG funds help with repairs, senior services

By Kevin Elliott

Bloomfield Township will receive about $50,000 in federal funds in 2023 to be dedicated to minor home repairs and senior services for low to moderate income residents, under a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG).

Bloomfield Township Senior Services Director Christine Tvaroha, at the township board of trustees meeting on Monday, December 12, said the department has managed the CDBG program since 2009 for the township, which has predominantly provided minor home repairs and Meals on Wheels service to low-income seniors. The funding is provided by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

Of the $50,000 expected in 2023, the township will use $35,000 for home repairs and $15,000 for Meals on Wheels, Tvaroha said.

“The program is designed to help low and moderate-income persons and help eliminate blight. The senior services goal is to help promote decent, affordable housing, extend senior independent living and improve quality of life.”

To date, the program has helped to complete 137 projects, with six underway in 2023. However, Tvaroha said recruiting for applicants is a year-round task. She said the average income of individuals served by the program is $25,654, with the average age being 69, and the length of homeownership 14 years. The maximum grant given to a household is $5,000, with a maximum of three grants, or $15,000 over a lifetime.

Income eligibility for the program is set by HUD, which sets the requirement for single-person households at $50,150 annually, or $57,300 for a two-person household. Homeowners must be at least 60 years of age. Low/moderate income is considered 80 percent of the community’s median income in Bloomfield Township.

Home projects may include utility or structural repairs and replacements, as well as removal of debris, large items or dangerous trees or branches.

The Bloomfield Township Board of Trustees unanimously approved the proposed allocations for the 2023 CDBG program.

“Part of the effort is to be able to serve people in the community who have needs that are met by the two programs we are talking about, but also there are hardship abilities where whether the taxes can be reviewed; solid waste can be looked at – and over the past few years, assessing has worked hand-in-hand with the treasury department to make sure that if someone comes in our door that we help them through all the different avenues,” said Bloomfield Township Treasurer Brian Kepes. “If there are people in need, there are opportunities to assist them through all the different programs in the township.”

For more information about the Minor Home Repair Program or Meals on Wheels, contact Bloomfield Township Senior Services at 248.723.3500.


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