Perry County gets funding for upgrades to affordable housing

A state program using federal pandemic relief funding is breathing new life into affordable housing efforts across Pennsylvania, including in the Midstate.

Two historic brick buildings in the heart of Perry County, are getting much need repairs and upgrades.

Tri-county Housing secured the funding through the p-a housing finance agency–and it couldn’t have come at a better time.

“Both of these senior housing developments apartments and the Newport hotel are the cornerstone of the borough of Newport Perry County. They both are 22 and 25 years old,” said Gary Lenker, Executive Director for Tri-County Housing.

The Newport hotel apartments will get over 700 thousand dollars’ worth of fixes and improvements– a little over 600 thousand for the Newport *square apartments.

The grants are part of a program designed to help build, preserve, and repair 3-thousand affordable rental units across the commonwealth. Perry County is among the places that need all the affordable housing it can get.

“Affordable housing, particularly is extremely challenging. I mean we have an overall housing crisis in this country but when it gets down to affordable housing, to assist low and modern-income persons and families. It is extremely challenging.” Said Lenker.

The buildings will get badly needed repairs to the roofs and flooring, new sprinkler systems, replacements for rusted pipes, and much more. Officials say it’s the least they can do to help those who rely on those apartments for an affordable place to live.

“These types of buildings are cornerstones of small communities like Newport borough and our mission of providing affordable housing reaches to rental housing in particularly focusing on seniors, so we have been able to provide that for them,” said Lenker.

Statewide the program got more than 250 million dollars’ worth of grant requests. It was able to fulfill 98 million dollars’ worth of those asks.

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