Home Ownership Academy Off 2013 Chopping Block
8/6/2012 (Updated 11:15:41 PM)(Source: Kate Thornton)
Despite significant cuts in federal aid to the City of Binghamton, one program that promotes home ownership is safe... for now.
The Home Ownership Academy, a program for potential home-buyers has been saved from the 2013 budget chopping block.
Monday night, Binghamton City Council approved an ordinance that reconsiders an amendment that cut the $16,000 funds to the academy.
Fourth District Councilwoman Lea Webb said that cut from the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), which she voted against, was an effort to fund other city's needs.
As part of the CDBG the city contractually is obligated to increase home ownership. By funding the academy through the CDBG, the city meets that financial obligation until August, 2013. The city's $16,000 portion, Webb said, really ushers the program forward.
"We're below the national average and having programs like this where it can connect young professionals, families, and other individuals in becoming home owners, it really stabilizes our tax base which is really critically important," said Webb.
From January-June 2012, the Home Ownership Academy provided education to more than 60 potential home buyers.
Sarah Walker, a success story of the academy said the program really helps anyone deciding to buy a home. "The class let me know that yes, I am actually ready. This is why. It helped me take the steps to make it happen."
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