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Local

Sterling home repair program returns

Residents can apply at City Hall for forgivable loan program

STERLING – Homeowners looking to make some needed repairs again have an opportunity to get funding as part of a program Sterling has used in the past.

James Jones of Economic Growth Corp. in Rock Island told Sterling City Council members the city again has received funds to help local homeowners make repairs.

However, there are conditions that have to be met.

Eligible homeowners must earn at or below 80 percent of the area median income for household size. Additionally, the house must have health and safety issues, and if the house was built pre-1978, lead requirements must be addressed. 

Jones said eligible homeowners can receive up to $45,000 per home to help them bring their properties up to standards. If they are doing only roof repairs, that amount is a maximum of $15,000.

Because of the stipulations in how these funds are secured and distributed, Sterling has to partner with a non-profit agency to be approved for the program, and city officials have worked with Economic Growth Corp. many times in the past to help residents make needed repairs.

“Our relationship with them goes back many years,” Mayor Skip Lee said. “We worked on the Lawrence Lofts and now have gotten another grant.”

Interested homeowners can get an application for the program at City Hall at the Building Department. Once that is completed, homeowners will have to call Economic Growth staff at 309-788-6311 to schedule an appointment. They will meet with homeowners individually to review the program guidelines and individual needs. They also can provide other services.

“We do financial education planning and I’ve consulted with a number of families,” Jones said.

The assistance program is a forgivable loan and if homeowners stay in their residence for 5 years after the work is done, there is no payback.

Sterling residents also may see crews soon on selected city streets doing work on manholes. Public Works Superintendent Brad Schrader told the council a company will be in the city doing rehabilitation work putting liners in underground pipes to help seal cracks and prolong their life.

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