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North country nonprofits awarded $623,000 for affordable housing projects

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WATERTOWN — Two north country nonprofits will receive a total of $623,000 to rehabilitate about two dozen affordable housing units in Jefferson County.

Neighbors of Watertown will receive $350,000 for its Jefferson County First Time Homebuyer Assistance Program, aiding the acquisition and rehabilitation of approximately 10 affordable homes in Jefferson County. North Country Affordable Housing will receive $273,000 for the rehabilitation of 13 affordable units.

Hollie A. Thesier, housing program coordinator with Neighbors of Watertown, described the funding as a big deal for the community.

“It can definitely go a long ways to keep affordable housing and help families out,” she said.

Funding from the state will be split between acquisitions of property and its rehabilitation, helping housing stock throughout the area.

Similar funding from the state in 2011 had a large effect, Mrs. Thesier said.

“It helped these homeowners get into these places and fix them up, when they couldn’t afford it otherwise,” she said.

The two groups collaborate on projects.

The two grants were just part of several announced Tuesday by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo. Overall, 37 agencies across the state will be awarded a combined $14 million in state Homes and Community Renewal grants.

“Every New Yorker deserves a home that is safe and affordable, and today we are funding projects across the state that will help to make that a reality,” Gov. Cuomo said in a news release. “Our administration will continue to work alongside local governments and nonprofit agencies to support affordable housing alternatives in every corner of the state.”

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