Greater Fremont Development Council Secures $850K Grant for Workforce Housing Development Program

FREMONT – Dodge county’s housing shortage just received a much-needed boost in the arm. The Greater Fremont Development Council will receive nearly one million dollars through the Rural Workforce Housing Investment Act.

The first grants from this new rural initiative from the Nebraska Department of Economic Development were publicly announced on Tuesday, and Dodge County was one of the recipients after a gruelling application period. Communities hoping for a slice of the $7 million dollar Rural Workforce Housing Fund had to apply, prove an ongoing workforce demand, demonstrate an ability to manage housing and investment projects – and, most critically, raise their own funds to create a dollar-for-dollar match from other sources in their own community.

Nearly two dozen communities applied, and fourteen were selected. Many applications were denied in full. The remaining 14 applicants received a portion of the fund, with $850,000 coming to Fremont – one of the largest grants awarded to any applicant community.

DED Director Dave Rippe expressed his appreciation for a program that he says will make significant impacts in rural Nebraska.  “Affordable, adequate housing is a frequent discussion point when referring to the workforce challenges and opportunities faced by our rural communities,” said director Rippe. “This program addresses that need directly, and in a big way, in locations throughout the state.”

Housing Projects Eligible for RWHF Grants Include:

  • New owner-occupied housing costing no more than $275,000
  • New rental housing units costing no more than $200,000
  • Owner-occupied or rental housing rehabilitation assistance
  • Upper-story housing

Details on how these funds will be applied for or disbursed in Dodge County are forthcoming. Dodge County residents in need of affordable, adequate housing will, hopefully, see some relief coming soon.

All RWHF program recipients and their funding allotments:

  • Central Nebraska Economic Development, Inc.: $239,630
  • Economic Development Council of Buffalo County: $319,500
  • Greater Fremont Development Council: $850,000
  • Hastings Economic Development Corporation: $850,000
  • Holdrege Development Corporation: $319,500
  • Lincoln County Community Development Corporation: $159,750
  • MAPA Foundation: $351,450
  • NeighborWorks Northeast Nebraska: $850,000
  • North Platte Area Chamber and Development Corporation: $383,400
  • Schuyler Community Development, Inc.: $810,000
  • SEND, Inc.: $639,000
  • South Central Development District, Inc.: $274,700
  • Wayne Community Housing Development Corporation: $639,000
  • York County Development Corporation: $323,000