HAC in the News

CIRD Work Featured by New Hampshire Newspaper

Representatives of the Citizens’ Institute on Rural Design, a leadership initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with the Housing Assistance Council, drew attention from the Keene (N.H.) Sentinel when they toured an area in Keene, New Hampshire targeted to become an arts corridor.

National Rural-Design Agency Advising Keene on Proposed Arts Corridor

by Caleb Symons

November 22, 2021

The mural needed a second look.

Sylvie Rice, a volunteer with the Historical Society of Cheshire County, had pointed out that Abraham Lincoln’s profile is deliberately etched into the clouds of an otherwise colonial-era scene on Church Street in downtown Keene. In unison, the small group of local arts promoters and rural-development advisers craned their necks to better see the 16th president.

HAC in the News

HAC’s Research featured on Marketplace Morning Report

Lance George, HAC’s Director of Research and Information, contributed his expertise to a segment on the Marketplace Morning ReportFor unincorporated communities, limited ways to regulate housing examines the challenges high amenity communities like Joshua Tree, California have with rental housing affordability. Lance offered a national perspective on factors that contribute to these challenges.

The Daily Yonder: USDA Seeks Equity in Housing…

The Daily Yonder reports from the 2021 HAC National Rural Housing Conference on President & CEO David’s Lipsetz’s interview with USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack.

USDA Seeks Equity in Housing, Less Extractive Rural Economies, Secretary of Ag Says

by Kristi Eaton
December 1, 2021

According to Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, the U.S. Department of Agriculture is incorporating an equity commission to review its activities, a move meant to provide greater equality and fairness in a department that has not always lived up to that.

Vilsack was interviewed during the 2021 National Rural Housing Conference. Put on by the Housing Assistance Council (HAC), a national nonprofit that supports affordable housing efforts throughout rural America, it provides below-market financing for affordable housing and community development, technical assistance and training, research and information, and policy formulation.

HAC in the News

Successful Farming – Rural America, Mostly White, is Becoming More Diverse

Successful Farming highlighted research from HAC and the Brookings Institute focused on diversity in rural America.

Three-quarters of rural Americans are white, a larger proportion than the roughly six in 10 for the nation overall, but the rural population is becoming more diverse, said a pair of analyses of Census data. The rural America of the future will be increasingly diverse and not as politically conservative as many assume, said the Brookings Institution…

“The overall rural population between 2010 and 2020 would have declined substantially if not for growth in its Hispanic population,” three researchers from the Housing Assistance Council said in the Daily Yonder. Hispanics make up 10.4% of the rural population and Blacks make up 7.4%. People of two or more races make up 4% of the rural population, and Native Americans are 2%, twice the national rate.

The Housing Assistance Council researchers said, “Despite advances made through the civil rights movement, labor struggles, and increased self-determination, the experiences and conditions of non-white rural residents and communities are often overlooked given their relatively small populations.”

HAC in the News

HAC lends expertise to profile of rural housing affordability challenges in Joshua Tree

Lance George, HAC’s Director of Research and Information, provided his rural housing expertise to Short-Term Rentals and High-End Buyers Wipe Out Affordable Housing in Joshua Tree, Say Residents, a recent article from The Daily Yonder. The piece profiles residents and housing advocates in Joshua Tree, California as they struggle to find affordable housing options in their community.

Michel Cicero has hardly taken a day off work since July 7, 2020. On that day she was paddleboarding at Big Bear Lake with friends but had to leave early because her phone was ringing off the hook, she said. “It hasn’t stopped since.”

Cicero is a real estate agent in Landers, California, which borders the community of Joshua Tree, adjacent to the national park. She has seen firsthand the disruption the pandemic has created in the real estate market. The length of her selling season doubled. In an area where single-offer home sales were the norm, multiple buyers started making offers—often of the all-cash variety—on each sale, raising prices and severely depleting housing stock…

 

 

“You add all of those dynamics together and you could get a really accelerated housing crisis among low- and moderate-income households that don’t have the money to buy homes.”

 

 

 

Rural Assembly profiles HAC’s Shonterria Charleston

As part of its #RuralWomenLead effort, the Rural Assembly wrote a profile highlighting HAC’s Director of Training and Technical Assistance Shonterria Charleston.

Shonterria Charleston brings to her work both a military sense of duty to get the job done and dedication to serve those in need.

Charleston has relied on both instincts during her 21 year career at the Housing Assistance Council, a national organization that helps build homes and communities across rural America.

Read the full profile on the Rural Assembly website.

Shonterria Charleston - HAC Director of Training and Technical Assistance

Oregon Veterans receives assistance from The Home Depot Foundation and HAC

The News-Review, the daily newspaper for Douglas County, OR, highlighted the story of Daniel Winder, a disabled veteran who would receive assistance from the program. The grant funding will be used to replace his back door and heating system and make other needed repairs.

I can’t express how thankful I am that this program exists to help us

The grant program, administered by HAC and funded by The Home Depot Foundation, is designed to provide elderly or disabled veterans repair their homes. This funding allows veterans to age in place in the communities they know and love while living in safe, quality housing.

“I can’t express how thankful I am that this program exists to help us, because most of these repairs cost thousands of dollars,” he said. “These improvements have made my life a lot more comfortable and I’m proud to live here now. With all these replacements, I don’t see me leaving this place anytime soon.”

Veterans grant recipients highlighted in Indian Country Today

Two recipients of the The Home Depot Foundation’s and HAC’s Affordable Housing for Rural Veterans 2017 grant funding have been profiled on www.indiancountrymedianetwork.com.

Bad River, White Mountain Veterans Housing Get Help with Home Rehabs

More than $250,000 awarded by the Home Depot Foundation and the Housing Assistance Council

by Mark Fogarty

American Indian veterans in Wisconsin and Arizona will benefit from grants to rehabilitate veterans housing in rural areas.

The Home Depot Foundation and the Housing Assistance Council (HAC) recently awarded more than $250,000 to build or preserve veteran housing to 10 housing non-profits, including ones serving the Bad River Band of Lake Superior Indians in Wisconsin and the White Mountain Apache tribe in Arizona.

Read the complete article.

HAC quoted in Wisconsin Public Radio story on rural homelessness

HAC executive Director Moises Loza was interviewed by Wisconsin Public Radio for a story about rural homelessness. Ashland Cares, a nonprofit in Ashland, WI, is purchasing a vacant school building to convert it to a shelter to help serve the homeless population of rural northern Wisconsin.

Moises discussed the difficulties rural communities face when attempting to count local homeless populations because of the lack of shelters, and the challenge of providing services for scattered populations.

Read the complete story and listen to the radio segment.

Moises Loza quoted in column about the Administration's budget

HAC’s Executive Director,  Moises Loza, made a statement about the negative impact the Trump Administration’s proposed budget would have on rural communities. These remarks ahve been used by several columnists to underscore the dangers ofbudget.