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September 5, 2008

Governor Blagojevich Announces $2.2 Million to Help Homeowners Preserve Their Homes
Rehabilitation grants will help 200 families across Illinois improve the safety and quality of their homes

CHICAGO – Governor Rod R. Blagojevich today announced $2.2 million in rehabilitation grants to help 200 low-income homeowners, including seniors and people with disabilities, to pay for home repairs, lower their utility bills and continue to afford their homes.  Through the Energy Conservation and Home Repair Program, eligible homeowners will receive up to $8,500.00 for energy conservation measures and home repairs, such as the replacement or repair of doors, windows, furnaces and roofs. 
“In these tough economic times, working Illinoisans, our seniors, and people with disabilities don’t have the extra money to fix a leaking roof or to pay expensive energy bills.  I am proud that we are helping 200 homeowners keep their homes through these grants by making necessary repairs and keeping up with their energy bills,” said Governor Blagojevich.
The State has committed nearly $2.2 million to the Energy Conservation and Home Repair Program - $1.2 million from the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS) and $1 million from the State Affordable Housing Trust Fund allocated by the Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA).  Trust Fund resources are collected from a real estate transfer tax. 
“Helping Illinoisans weatherize their homes is yet another step that the Governor is taking to keep people safe and out of the harmful elements,” said Barry Maram, Director of HFS.  “These grants provide homeowners with valuable resources and tips to prepare their homes and families for the varying Illinois weather.”   
The Energy Conservation and Home Repair Program will be administered locally by the six community action agencies.  HFS will make grants to these community action agencies directly, while IHDA’s grant will be made to the Illinois Community Action Association, which has administered the program in partnership with HFS for nearly 15 years.
As an initiative of Governor Blagojevich, this year’s program will target TEAM Illinois communities throughout the state. TEAM Illinois is an unprecedented effort to pool and focus Illinois resources, create public-private partnerships and collaborate with local citizens and community stakeholders in areas with a demonstrated need for infrastructure and economic development.

Grants by Counties
Service Provider

No. of homeowners to be helped
Community and Economic Development Association of Cook County, Inc.
Kankakee County Community Services
Madison County Community Development
Shawnee Development Council
Tri-County Opportunities Council
“Governor Blagojevich recognizes that the State’s ability to preserve its existing affordable housing stock is just as crucial as creating new units.  That’s why, as the State’s affordable housing agency, IHDA finances several statewide programs that assist low-income homeowners and landlords to rehabilitate and preserve the affordability of their properties.  Besides the Energy Conservation and Home Repair Program, grants under the Single-Family Owner-Occupied Rehabilitation Program and the Small Rental Properties Program also ensure that families’ homes remain safe and decent places to live,” said DeShana L. Forney, IHDA Executive Director.
To qualify, applicants must earn less than 50 percent of the area median income.  For example, in Cook County, a family of four with a household income under $37,700 may qualify.  Applicants should contact the toll-free Keep Warm Illinois hotline at 877-411-9276 for a referral to their local community action agency.


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