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Reminder: Housing Seniors in Rural America – Resources, Advocacy, & Practice

Posted May 30, 2012

June 5-6 – Hilton Burlington Hotel – Housing Assistance Council 

Link to Register & More Information



Job Posting: Twin Pines Housing Trust Executive Director


Twin Pines Housing Trust, a non-profit housing developer and manager of affordable housing serving Upper Valley Connecticut River communities in New Hampshire and Vermont, is seeking an experienced and highly motivated Executive Director.  Twin Pines currently provides 264 single- and multi-unit homes, with and without social service support, for families and seniors.  Several other projects are under development.

Candidates should have proven expertise in affordable housing, community development, finance, policy or planning.  Also, experience with nonprofit management, Board relations, financial planning, fundraising, and personnel administration is highly preferred.  Excellent interpersonal, communications, and community outreach skills are essential.

Additional requirements include a Bachelor’s degree, at minimum, and proficiency with business software and interactive technology.

The ideal candidate will be a flexible and entrepreneurial leader, committed to meeting a broad range of housing-related needs in our communities.  Please submit cover letter and current resume to not later than Friday, June 8, 2012.

Twin Pines is an Equal Opportunity Employer.


Business Opportunities in Community Development Lending: June 8th


Friday, June 8th – Holiday Inn – South Burlington – 8:30am – 1:00pm

For community bankers, community development experts, nonprofit lenders and municipal government representatives.

  • Share knowledge with other dealmakers.
  • Expert panelists discuss paths to success from their different perspectives.
  • Vermont examples of how collaboration and creativity can lead to credit.
  • Focused on affordable housing, small business, economic development .

Link to Registration & Agenda information 


Seniors enjoying new city housing: officials point to project as a model

Posted May 29, 2012

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS chats with some of the residents of Vergennes Senior Housing before a ceremony Monday marking the completion of the affordable housing complex on Armory Lane. Independent photo/Trent Campbell

Addison County Independent – Posted on May 24, 2012 – Kaitlyn Kirkaldy

VERGENNES — Larry Carlson was on the waiting list for an apartment in the Vergennes Senior Housing building for more than three years. Once construction began, he checked back every week to see if he would get in. Now a resident of the newly opened facility off Armory Lane, he is thrilled with his experience.

“As soon as the architect first came out, I was over to the offices and signed up. I was here every single week to check and see how the progress was coming,” said Carlson.

At an open house Monday morning, Addison County Community Trust (ACCT) Executive Director Terry McKnight said that Carlson’s satisfaction with the project was typical.

“You can look around and see the faces of the people that now live in that building. If you talk to any of them, they’re really enjoying it,” McKnight said.

U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., joined McKnight and representatives of Housing Vermont, ACCT, and other project contributors to celebrate the opening of Vergennes Senior Housing. The $6.2 million facility will provide 25 affordable and energy-efficient apartments to seniors.

The facility was paid for through a mix of public and private funds, from People’s United Bank, various Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) programs, Vermont Housing Finance Agency, Vermont Housing and Conservation Board, Vermont Community Development Program and Efficiency Vermont.

Sanders secured $380,000 for the project in a HUD grant.

“This is exactly the kind of housing we should be building,” Sanders said. “Not only does it meet the significant need for quality and affordable senior housing , but it does it in a very energy-efficient manner.”

Nancy Owens, president of Housing Vermont, acknowledged the importance of creating affordable housing.

“One of the great things about this property is that it’s affordable to people with a range of incomes, that it’s welcoming to the entire community and lots of different people can live here,” Owens said.

All speakers emphasized the balance between affordability and energy efficiency.

“This is a great project because it exemplifies everything that is right about affordable housing: mixed income, energy efficient, it works, it’s accessible, it combines public and private money, and it’s in a space where it created jobs,” said Art Casavant, vice president of People’s United Bank.

The 25,244-square-foot building will not only provide comfortable residences for two dozen Addison County seniors, but itwill also serve as a base for the local Meals on Wheels program, and there will be twice-a-week senior luncheons, as well as a range of events for residents and for the whole community.

The project took years to develop and months to complete. Ultimately, everyone involved is thrilled with the outcome of their hard work.

“This is a building that took a lot of planning, a lot of work, and created a lot of jobs, and really came out a beautiful building with the most advanced energy systems possible,” McKnight said.

Owens called attention to the numerous energy-efficient features of the project.

“We have the solar panels on the roof, we have the wood-pellet boiler, we are looking at energy efficiency in this building where we will have about 50 percent of the energy costs compared to a similar building. This helps us keep our rent affordable in the long haul,” said Owens.

Beyond providing affordable and sustainable housing to seniors, Vergennes Senior Housing has been designated as the first site in Addison County for the Services and Support at Home (SASH) program.

“SASH is a HUD program to reach out to people on Medicare in the county and help coordinate services for them in their homes or their apartment buildings where they live, and to help support people to continue to live independently. We’re organizing that in Addison County,” said McKnight.

With the project successfully built, many hope to build similar developments in Vergennes and in the rest of Vermont. However, there is a two-year moratorium on grants for such projects, so Sanders will be unable to obtain more funds, according to his staff.

Mayor Michael Daniels expressed his desire for future projects, and Owens has similar hopes, adding that it is feasible in Vergennes.

“We do own the property that surrounds this building and have hopefully some future plans for some more housing and maybe a childcare center, so hopefully the neighborhood can continue to grow and to serve the community,” Owenssaid.

Carlson spoke for the residents and added his seal of approval.

“This is one of the most beautiful buildings I’ve ever seen,” he said. “It houses us beautifully, the apartments are just phenomenal, and the staff that you have in this particular building and working at the office are great. I just wanted to let you know that we are super pleased with everything.”


HUD Fair Housing Accessibility Training: Thursday, May 31st


HUD is offering free Fair Housing Accessibility training in New Hampshire next week. Please see the attached flyer and registration form. The training will include: An Overview of the Design & Construction Requirements of the Fair Housing Act, Strategies for Compliant Kitchens, and Strategies for Compliant Bathrooms

Date:            May 31, 2012

Time:            8:00 AM to 4:15 PM

Location:     New Hampshire Finance Authority, 32 Constitution Drive, Bedford, NH

This program is registered with the American Institute of Architects. Architects will receive up to 6 continuing education credits. Please forward this message to anyone who may be interested in attending.

If you have any questions, please contact John Ritzu – Program ManagerFair Housing FIRST/LCM Architects1-312-913-1717 x228    Merryl Gibbs HUD Office of Fair Housing & Equal Opportunity New England Phone:  617-994-8305Fax: 617-778-5216 or 617-565-7313E-mail:

Training Flyer

Registration Form



Posted May 23, 2012

Re-Posted from Housing Vermont & VHFA

A standing room only crowd filled the Vergennes Senior Housing community room on May 21 to celebrate the opening of 25 new apartments for seniors.

Senator Bernie Sanders joined representatives of Housing Vermont and the Addison County Community Trust (ACCT) and public and private funders in welcoming the new residents.

Senator Sanders said “This is exactly the kind of housing we should be building – not only does it meet the significant need for quality and affordable senior housing, but it does it in a very energy efficient manner.  Also, this project is much more than housing.  It brings the elderly of the entire community together in their own senior center and enables them to continue to participate actively in the life of the community.”  Sanders also noted that there will be twice weekly senior luncheons at the site, and the local Meals-on-Wheels program.

Link to Housing Vermont Article

PDF of original Housing Vermont Article


VHMA Advanced Low Income Housing Tax Credit Course: June 7th


As a reminder, VHMA is offering an Advanced Low Income Housing Tax Credit Course on Thursday, June 7, 2012 from 8:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.  The attached flier provides all of the specifics and the registration form.

Please note registrations are due by May 25, 2012.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Tracy Robertson.

Tracy Robertson, Asset Manager – Housing Vermont

(802) 861-3826

PDF of Full Information on Course


Fund aids Vermont mobile-home owners


Burlington Free Press: Lisa Rathke, The Associated Press

May 20, 2012

BERLIN — Glenn French and his wife lost their mobile home and much of its contents whenfloodwaters from Tropical Storm Irene ripped through Weston’s Mobile Home park in Berlin. They were lucky enough to find another trailer, a doublewide, not too far away on a hill.

But French, 67, says they rushed into buying it because they needed a home and have since discovered problems that need to be repaired. The roof should be replaced and the septic system needs work.

“It’s hard to find housing around here,” he said.

He hopes to get help from a newly created fund for residents of mobile home parks who were victims of the Aug. 28 storm and of flooding last May. The fund was started with a gift of $50,000 from a Middlebury couple, David and Eleanor Ignat.

Organizers say $500 grants will be awarded to people who have applied and are deemed eligible. The deadline to apply is July 16 …

Link to Burlington Free Press Article

PDF of Burlington Free Press Article


Webinar: Ending Veteran Homelessness – USICH

Posted May 18, 2012

Beyond HUD-VASH: Ending Veteran Homelessness 
Webinar to be held Wednesday, May 23, 3 p.m. EDT

Veteran homelessness declined by 12 percent between 2010 and 2011. In order to build on this momentum and achieve the goal of ending Veterans homelessness by 2015, the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness (USICH) is calling on communities to develop a Veteran-centric approach that uses all the available resources to help our Veterans. USICH is hosting a webinar to share advice from successful efforts on how to develop a comprehensive approach that effectively brings the resources available to Veterans in need to improve housing and life outcomes.

Panelists include:

• USICH Executive Director Barbara Poppe
• Veterans Health Administration’s National Director of Homeless Programs Lisa Pape
• Director of the King County Committee to End Homelessness Bill Block
• Arizona Coalition to End Homelessness’ Executive Director Joan Serviss

The webinar will be held Wednesday, May 23, at 3 p.m. EDT. To register, click here.


Irene Recovery Event: June 8th – Gilman Housing Trust


Gilman Housing Trust

As you well know, in August, 2011 Tropical Storm Irene wreaked havoc across the State.  Particularly impacted were central and southern counties as torrential rains swelled streams and rivers, overflowing banks and devastating towns, villages, and outlying areas. Hundreds of homes were lost and economic centers were hit hard. Some northern areas, being upriver, were spared the worst. Gilman Housing Trust and our sister organizations around the state have reached-out to those affected and have provided rehab funds, counsel, and referrals as needed.

On Friday, June 8, 2012 all of us will be coming together to work on reconstruction, rehab, clean-up, and beautification projects in the hard-hit Windsor/Windham counties area.  We hope that you will join us. The work will include painting and finishing replacement homes, revitalizing recreation fields, restoring bleachers and dugouts, carrying furniture into shelters, planting, landscaping, clearing debris, etc.  All levels of skills are needed. All participation is welcomed.

Please let us know if you or anyone from your group will be able to participate.  You’ll receive directions to the gathering point where assignments will be made. Come join colleagues from across our region. Help our neighbors.  Make a difference.

Please contact Peg Hale or Trisha Ingalls at Gilman Housing Trust at 802-535-3555, or toll free at 888-MY VT HOME. Email them at or  Thank you!


George Mathias, Chief Operating Officer

Gilman Housing Trust, Inc. – 48 Elm Street – P.O. Box 259 – Lyndonville, VT 05851

direct  802.535.3592 / cell  802.535.5056


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