Saturday, March 19


Illinois is semifinalist for 'Oscar' award for government innovation     Send a link to a friend

Employer-assisted housing program makes Illinois a contender for $100,000

[MARCH 19, 2005]  CHICAGO -- Named one of 50 "best and brightest" government programs by the Innovations in American Government awards, Illinois' employer-assisted housing program is a contender for one of six $100,000 grants. An initiative of the Illinois Housing Development Authority, the program combines public and private resources to help working families become homeowners near their jobs.

"I applaud the employers who have stepped up to the plate to help themselves by helping their employees," said Gov. Rod Blagojevich. "When employers help employees obtain affordable housing near their jobs, it stabilizes the work force, helps businesses succeed and encourages economic development. Employer-assisted housing helps working families buy homes in the communities where they work so they spend less time commuting and have more time and energy to enjoy their families and contribute to their communities."

Affordable housing near work and transportation is one of the six housing priorities outlined by the governor in Executive Order 2003-18 and is one of the main tenants of "Building for Success: Illinois' Comprehensive Housing Plan." The Illinois Housing Development Authority supports employer-assisted housing programs by using Illinois Affordable Housing Tax Credits to provide employers a state income tax credit of 50 cents for every dollar spent for such a program. The agency also provides below-market rate loans and down payment and closing cost assistance to assist low-income buyers and leverage greater impact from the programs.

"I commend Governor Rod Blagojevich for making live-near-work initiatives a priority for affordable housing in Illinois," said Kelly King Dibble, executive director of the Illinois Housing Development Authority. "His leadership and vision is helping families across Illinois obtain affordable housing in the communities where they work. We are excited to be an ‘Oscar' semifinalist and remain committed to using our resources to fullest extent possible to leverage affordable housing investment and help those who most need safe, secure homes."

Considered the "Oscars" of government awards, the Innovations in Government awards recognize outstanding government programs that creatively and effectively meet challenges facing government today and can be replicated by other government bodies. As a semifinalist, the Illinois Housing Development Authority's employer-assisted housing programs program is a contender for the Fannie Mae Foundation Innovations Award in Affordable Housing and is in the top 5 percent of more than 1,000 local, regional, county, state and federal government programs from across the nation.

[to top of second column in this article]

"Companies realize employer-assisted housing can help them retain quality employees and reduce recruitment and training costs," said Robin Snyderman, housing director at the Metropolitan Planning Council. "The state's dedication to employer-assisted housing has created new relationships between the public and private sectors. It has increased awareness of affordable housing investment opportunities that improve the quality of life for Illinois families while promoting economic growth."

About the Illinois Housing Development Authority

The Illinois Housing Development Authority is a self-supporting state agency that finances the creation and the preservation of affordable housing across Illinois. Since its creation by an act of the Illinois legislature in 1967, the agency has allocated more than $6.4 billion and financed more than 160,000 units of affordable housing across the state. The agency accomplishes its mission through a number of federal and state funding sources, including the Illinois Affordable Housing Trust Fund, the Illinois Affordable Housing Tax Credit Fund, the allocation of federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits, HOME Investment Partnership funds and others. The agency is also a bonding authority and independently sells bonds, based on its own good credit, to finance affordable housing across the state.

[Illinois Housing Development Authority]

< Top Stories index

Back to top


News | Sports | Business | Rural Review | Teaching & Learning | Home and Family | Tourism | Obituaries

Community | Perspectives | Law & Courts | Leisure Time | Spiritual Life | Health & Fitness | Teen Scene
Calendar | Letters to the Editor