“We need a new office,” said the Housing Alliance’s executive director, Scott McReynolds.
He said the Alliance staff of eight people is currently housed in a 900 square foot space that has become too small for the staff.
The Alliance bought the Colonial Club on North Main Street and demolished it to make way for a new building. The only hitch was lack of funding. This is when the group began requesting grant monies.
“All the money (to build) the office … is money that is available on a competitive basis,” McReynolds said. “If we didn’t go out and get it, it would go to other communities and be used there.”
The Alliance received money from several different sources, like the Rural Communities Facility Grant, HUD Rural Housing and Economic Grant, and coal severance money, to undertake their major building project.
Not only will the new building help the Housing Alliance build a new office space, but this project, McReynolds said, will benefit the local economy as well.
“This will create a pretty big economic impact,” McReynolds said. “In addition to helping people (by building them houses), there is a direct benefit of jobs here (in Perry County).”
He added that the Housing Alliance spent approximately $2.5 million in the local economy just last year.
In keeping with their continued support of the local economy, McReynolds said the Alliance hopes to hire local carpenters to help build the new office.
He said that building this new office will allow the Housing Alliance to hire more staff and will enable the group to better provide their services to Perry County as well as the three other counties they serve: Knott, Leslie and Breathitt.
McReynolds said the hope is that the office will be complete sometime in early 2011, after the bid for a contractor goes out and the Alliance has had time to chose the best deal for their needs.
He also stressed that this new office would help bring economic benefits to Perry County.
“Even though the end benefit (of our work) is sometimes in other counties,” McReynolds said. “We will still have an economic benefit in Perry County.”