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Holdrege celebrates new rural workforce housing

Published: Jul. 8, 2020 at 6:22 PM CDT
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HOLDREGE, Neb. (KSNB) -A pandemic has not slowed down the need for housing in rural areas. On Wednesday, Holdrege cut the ribbon on its latest home designed to bring working families to the area.

The South Central Economic Development District celebrated a rejuvenated property that will be going to a working class family and that is its goal for properties across the state.

Before the house stood on the lot, a rundown duplex was in its place. SCEDD helped get the property leveled and a new home built through the Rural Workforce Housing Act. It's a bill that was created to give out loans to pay contractors to build in the riskier rural areas. With the state rebounding off a pandemic, Governor Pete Ricketts wants to see the program continue,

“As we look to start getting Nebraska going again recovering from the pandemic we’re going to have the same issues we had before which is attracting people to all of our towns here in Nebraska and having the right houses is a big key to that,” Governor Ricketts said.

SCEDD also gives loans to rehabilitate buildings in communities. While the house in Holdrege was totally redone they said there are a lot of buildings that can be used for its structure to save money.

“We have a lot of homes that need fixed in town so you can’t just let those to continue to deteriorate,” said Sharon Hueftle, Executive Director of SCEDD. “We need someone who is going to care and really invest and flip those homes into something a family will want. We can attract workers into town, they can keep our businesses booming.”

The houses have a specific cost limit so that it is affordable for working families to buy them. The people buying the new house moved to Holdrege two years ago from Kentucky and wanted to have a bigger home.

“I think it’s a great opportunity. I mean we’re benefiting and it sounds like it’s going to continue to help other families,” Homeowner Josh Lindmark said.

There are talks of increasing the funding for the Act, which will be discussed in the new legislative session starting in two weeks.

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