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No Place Like Home program moves toward $500,000 for permanent housing

A resolution to apply for and accept $500,000 from the County Noncompetitive Allocation Award under the California Department of Housing and Community Development was approved by members of the Plumas County Board of Supervisors on July 9.

Aimee Heaney, Mental Health Services Act coordinator, was before supervisors discussing the application process and what the funding means for Plumas and Sierra counties.

The funding is designed for small counties with populations of less than 200,000, Heaney explained. Both Plumas and Sierra counties are designated frontier counties. Population levels have fallen even further below those ranked as rural counties.

It allows for mixed-use, affordable housing projects designed for permanent supportive housing units for target populations, she explained.

The target population includes those people living with a serious mental illness and to families with children living with a serious emotional disturbance.

No Place Like Home is a statewide housing program administered through HCD.

“Does Roger (Diefendorf) have anything to do with this?” Supervisor Jeff Engel asked. Diefendorf is executive director of the Plumas and Sierra counties Community Development Commission. Members of the Plumas County Board of Supervisors also sit on the CDC.

Heaney said that with the participation of CDC, Plumas County’s Behavioral Health becomes competitive as a county. Other departments and agencies in the county also participated in the application process.

Behavioral Health is also partnering with Sierra County’s Behavioral Health program. Future affordable housing developers, those interested in housing and the Continuum of Care are also among those participating.

In turn, Sierra County will also partner with Plumas and is to receive the same set amount of funding.

Heaney said, “We’re moving along through this process.”

About 30 people can participate in the program, she explained.

It was recommended by the Plumas-Sierra Housing Continuum of Care that a housing consultant be brought in to move the process along.

Following the meeting, Heaney explained that this sounds like a lot of money, but it really isn’t because housing is so expensive. What is good about it is that it can be used to leverage larger projects.

The deadline for the grant acceptance form and the accompanying resolution is Thursday, Aug. 15.

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