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City to purchase, demolish old homes, building new ones to sell

The City of Lawton will spend some of its federal funds to buy and demolish deteriorating houses before building new ones in their place.

City Council members, acting in their capacity as the Lawton Urban Homesteading Authority, has adopted a resolution that will allow the City of Lawton’s housing and community development staff to buy four deteriorating properties, using the housing reconstruction project in the HOME program. The HOME program provides federal funding that are restricted to housing-related uses that benefit low-income residents, similar in design to the Community Development Block Grant program (only CDBG funds may be used on a wider variety of projects).

Christine James, supervisor for the housing and community development division, said the project dates to council action in June when it agreed to amend Lawton’s Annual Action Plan to include a new category for HOME funds: housing reconstruction project. The idea was to increase use of those federal funds for housing projects through new categories that could benefit more or new residents.

The Lawton Constitution

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