Organization tries to meet community need

Local News
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CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — The high cost of rent can make it hard for families to make ends meet.

“It’s kind of challenging in the area,” said Sanya Butler.

The Housing Authority is trying to make things easier. The director says they are breaking ground on three new developments within the next year. In order to move in, your name must be pulled from the waitlist.  

“We have applicants come in and give us their updated information. We verify to see that they’re eligible for the program and if so we continue with the application process,” said Tiffany Gonzalez of the Housing Authority of Champaign County.

There are around 900 people on the waitlist for housing. The deputy director and chief operating officer says the large backlog isn’t necessarily unusual.

“By the time we pull your name from the waiting list, we’ll have an abundance of people who maybe aren’t interested anymore and so therefore we want to make sure we have enough applicants to last maybe for a year or two vacancies,” said Gonzalez.

It also helps them screen potential tenants so they can give homes to those who need it most.

Sanya Butler lives in an affordable housing unit. She says she has had trouble finding a home she can pay for each month.

“It will help a lot of people that’s having struggles with their rent,” said Butler.

In addition to the three new developments they’re planning on breaking ground on this year, there are others in the works. They have about 400 new units in development or planning phase. Those homes are for families, seniors or people with special needs. 

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