Published 2:36 pm Wednesday, September 7, 2022

The Louisiana Office of Community Development is accepting public comments on an Action Plan Amendment that will reallocate funds in the Restore Louisiana Homeowner Assistance Program, as well as other Restore programs, to increase affordable rental housing stock and clarify a workforce development program for recovery from the Great Floods of 2016.

Action Plan Amendment 19 reduces the allocations of multiple Restore programs, using those funds to increase the budget for the Middle Market Loan program and create a new affordable rental housing program in Baton Rouge.

The state created the Middle Market Loan Program to provide gap financing for the construction or rehabilitation of affordable housing units that serve a range of household incomes, with the goal of using higher-cost units to generate deeper affordability for low- to moderate-income renters. The increase in the MML program will provide more gap assistance for construction benefitting LMI renters.

APA 19 creates a new affordable rental housing program in Baton Rouge. This program will address long-term rental housing recovery needs of low- to moderate-income families by transforming about 1.6-square miles of two overlapping neighborhoods (Smiley Heights and Melrose East) in north Baton Rouge. The vision for this community is to develop a holistic, integrated revitalization plan that transforms Smiley Heights, Melrose East and Ardenwood Village into a community of opportunity for the people who live there through the construction of a new, mixed-income community adjacent to the existing community.

In addition, APA 19 further clarifies the Flood-Ready Workforce Development program, including a program name change to PRO Louisiana.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development considers APA 19 substantial, as it involves the movement of more than $5 million and creates a new program. The total Community Development Block Grant-Disaster Recovery allocation from HUD for Louisiana’s recovery from the Great Floods of 2016 remains unchanged at $1,708,407,000.

The formal public comment period for APA 19 begins today, Sept. 7, and continues until 5 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 4, 2022. Residents, community leaders and elected officials can view and comment on the plan by clicking here and selecting the respective APA link.