by Dennis Dalman
A grant application applied for by the city of Sartell in February has been granted – $513,000 for home rehab projects given via the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development.
It is good news for Sartell because it is $53,000 more than the amount requested in the grant application. In its application in February, the city asked for $460,000.
It is a Small Cities Development Grant, and Sartell was one of many Minnesota cities to receive one, with the average grant amount of from $400,000 to $600,000. A total of $43 million, funded by the state, will be disbursed throughout Minnesota.
Sartell has the grant administered for specific rehab work through the Central Minnesota Housing Partnership.
There is enough money for five projects of owner-occupied places (up to $24,000 per project); two projects for single-family rentals (up to $24,000 per project), two units of duplex rentals (up to $12,000 per unit); and numerous multi-family rental units (up to $12,500 per unit). The funds could be used for rehab projects that include roofing, siding, windows, doors, insulation, electrical, plumbing, health-and-safety, energy efficiency, accessibility and lead paint remediation.
The funds will not have to be repaid back for owner-occupied dwellings as long as the owner lives for seven years in the property as homestead status. If the owner moves, money owed would be pro-rated for repayment at no interest. Any funds repaid would go back into a revolving fund for future Sartell residential rehab projects.
Sartell Administrator Mary Degiovanni said a similar Small Cities Grant was given to Sartell in 2013 for home rehab projects in 2014 and 2015, mainly for homes on Sartell’s east side, but with 10 rental properties on the city’s west side.
This new grant money will be used in three target areas in Sartell. One of them is an owner-occupied residential area in the city east of the Mississippi River and just northeast of the dam; another target area, also of owner-occupied dwellings, is between Second Street S. and Sartell Street W. The third consists of multi-family rental buildings just east of the school district’s office building (the former Sartell School of decades ago).
To be eligible for this particular grant, a project must meet one of three objectives: benefit people of low and moderate incomes, eliminate slum and blighted conditions or eliminate an urgent threat to public health or safety.
Author: Dennis Dalman
Dalman was born and raised in South St. Cloud, graduated from St. Cloud Tech High School, then graduated from St. Cloud State University with a degree in English (emphasis on American and British literature) and mass communications (emphasis on print journalism). He studied in London, England for a year (1980-81) where he concentrated on British literature, political science, the history of Great Britain and wrote a book-length study of the British writer V.S. Naipaul. Dalman has been a reporter and weekly columnist for more than 30 years and worked for 16 of those years for the Alexandria Echo Press.