LITTLE ROCK, ARKANSAS August 12, 2016 — U.S. Representative French Hill (AR-2) today joined representatives from the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas (FHLB Dallas), Bank of the Ozarks, and Habitat for Humanity of Central Arkansas for a “wall-raising” event and to celebrate $347,000 in Affordable Housing Program (AHP) grants that have been awarded to Habitat for Humanity of Central Arkansas over the past seven years.
As part of the $347,000 grant issued in 2015 from FHLB Dallas and Bank of the Ozarks, $70,000 will benefit 10 homes through Habitat for Humanity. This includes today’s kick-off home build for 30-year-old single mother of two, Shalaniece Floyd, as well as nine other homes. Ms. Floyd and the nine other families will purchase the Habitat homes with a zero percent interest loan when construction is complete. Working alongside donors and volunteers, they will invest 300 sweat equity hours into their homes.
Congressman French Hill, a long-time Habitat for Humanity volunteer, is committed to investing “sweat equity hours,” as well.
“I’ve long been a supporter of Habitat for Humanity and all it does to promote affordable housing in Arkansas,” said Congressman Hill, who is also a member of the House Committee on Financial Services. “It is an honor to participate in today’s wall-raising activity and to help build a home for a deserving Little Rock family.”
Bank of the Ozarks Vice President and Director of Community Development Eric Gustafson said the AHP is a valuable tool in providing affordable housing to the Central Arkansas community.
“We have supported Habitat for Humanity of Central Arkansas for a long time,” said Mr. Gustafson, who is also on the board of directors for the organization. “Affordable housing is an incredibly important issue for the community and the individuals who are guided by them. We’re proud to partner with FHLB Dallas to help provide affordable housing to local families.”
FHLB Dallas annually returns 10 percent of its profits in the form of AHP grants to the communities served by its member institutions such as Bank of the Ozarks. AHP grants fund a variety of projects, including home rehabilitation and modifications for low-income, elderly, and special-needs residents; down payment and closing cost assistance for qualified first-time homebuyers; and the construction of low-income, multifamily rental communities, and single-family homes. This year, FHLB Dallas awarded $7.8 million in AHP grants to 27 projects that will result in 1,499 new or renovated housing units. Of that $7.8 million in AHP grants, an additional $49,000 were awarded through Bank of the Ozarks to support the Garland County Habitat for Humanity in Hot Springs, Arkansas.
Habitat for Humanity of Central Arkansas Chief Operating Officer Kelley Sims expressed her gratitude for the continued support.
“Grants such as the AHP represent an important piece of the affordable housing puzzle,” she said. “Without the funding, projects are delayed, or may not see the light of day. Habitat families benefit immensely from not only volunteers’ sweat equity, including their own, but also the actual equity that comes from Bank of the Ozarks and FHLB Dallas.”
Greg Hettrick, FHLB Dallas first vice president and director of Community Investment, praised Bank of the Ozarks for their support of the community through the AHP.
“Bank of the Ozarks’ commitment to providing affordable housing to the Central Arkansas community is an inspiration and we value their partnership,” he said.