Danbury City Council Approves Vet House II Application
At its April meeting the Danbury City Council unanimously approved a resolution authorizing the City of Danbury to apply for funding for Veterans Housing under the Economic Development Initiative Special Project Grant Program. The City worked in close cooperation with United States Congressman Chris Murphy to secure this funding to provide affordable housing for homeless veterans and their families.
The City of Danbury will partner with the Non-Profit Development Corporation of Danbury, Inc. (NPDCD) as sub-grantee to carrying out this project to provide affordable rental housing for veteran-headed families in Danbury. The project will involve the acquisition and rehabilitation of a vacant, foreclosed 3-family dwelling located at 20 New Street. The project will produce three units of permanent housing for low and moderate income veteran headed households who are homeless or in danger of becoming homeless. Supportive services for these families will be provided through other funding sources in order to ensure that any social service needs of the veterans and their families are addressed in a comprehensive manner. The City’s Finance Department will be responsible for financial management and monitoring of the EDI grant. NPDCD will be a sub-grantee of the City and will acquire, rehabilitate and manage the property.
This project has already received a commitment from the City of Danbury for Community Development Block Grant funds from Program Year 39 in the amount of $100,000.00 to assist with acquisition costs. The project is consistent with the City’s Consolidated Plan as well as the Mayor’s Housing For Heroes initiative to address the housing needs of veterans in a comprehensive manner. The need to address the housing and supportive service needs of veterans is also documented in Danbury’s Ten-Year Plan To End Homelessness, which is appended to the City’s Consolidated Plan submitted to HUD.
The Vet House II project will complement and expand on transitional and permanent housing facilities currently operating at the neighboring property, 18 New Street. Known as Vet House, this facility contains six transitional beds for homeless veterans as well as four SRO-style permanent units. Vet House is a collaborative effort of NPDCD, the City of Danbury and the Housing Authority of the City of Danbury. Funding for the project was provided through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, NPDCD, the City of Danbury and the Housing Authority of the City of Danbury. Occupancy of Vet House I began in December of 2009. While Vet House I targets individual veterans, Vet House II will enable NPDCD to expand its offerings to focus on and address the needs of homeless veteran families. Led by President Paul J. Valeri, a Vietnam veteran, NPDCD has played a leading role in the City’s efforts to address the needs of homeless veterans.