DeJongh: Federal Funds To Ease V.I. Housing Problems

Aug. 12, 2008 — Funds recently provided by the federal government will blunt the impact in the Virgin Islands of the national subprime mortgage crisis and help with the "many serious housing problems we have in the territory," Gov. John deJongh Jr. said Monday.
In a statement issued by Government House Monday evening, deJongh said he hoped to tap into the Community Development Block Grant funds, which are included in the federal Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 and amount to about $4 billion. The appropriation allows state and local governments to buy abandoned homes and rehab foreclosed properties in hopes of stabilizing the housing market, according to the Department of Housing and Urban Development website .
"My administration is moving aggressively to take advantage of these programs," deJongh said Monday. "While the subprime crisis that has devastated so many communities on the mainland has largely skirted the Virgin Islands, we have many serious housing problems in the territory that can be helped by this landmark legislation. Indeed, we are already working with the secretary of Housing and Urban Development and our own housing agencies to develop potential projects that can be financed under these programs."
The bill was signed into law by President George W. Bush in July.
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