Tax credits and tax exempt bonds issued by WHEDA will rehab housing units for low-income elderly Milwaukee residents
MADISON – Governor Scott Walker announced today that the Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority (WHEDA) has issued $12.5 million in Low Income Housing Tax Credits and $16 million in tax exempt bonds to rehabilitate 201 housing units at Lapham Park, just north of downtown Milwaukee. Lapham Park serves low-income elderly residents. Many of these residents are also disabled, wheelchair-bound, suffer from vision or hearing loss and show the early signs of Alzheimer’s. Upon completion of the project, 201 accessible housing units will be like brand new.
“The Lapham Park investment is gratifying because of the quality upgrade in housing for our most needy citizens,” said Governor Walker. “The economic impact is also substantial. The Lapham Park project is expected to create 60 construction jobs. That’s terrific news as we continue to rejuvenate our state economy.”
“WHEDA is excited to partner with the Housing Authority of the City of Milwaukee to breathe new life into the Lapham Park complex,” said WHEDA Executive Director Wyman Winston. “By supplying the tax credits and construction financing, not only do we provide a life-line for one of the City’s neediest populations, we open the door for much-needed job creation.”
The Lapham Park complex was built in 1964 and is owned and operated by the Housing Authority of the City of Milwaukee.
“Lapham Park has a long history of providing affordable and innovative senior housing to those most in need. Financing from WHEDA will help to support renovations that will expand accessibility, maximize energy efficiency and improve quality of life for low-income senior citizens,” said Milwaukee Common Council President and Chairman of the Housing Authority’s Board of Commissioners Willie L. Hines, Jr. “Lapham Park is a national model of a Continuing Care Community partnership for low-income seniors. By allowing seniors to age in their community instead of transferring to more expensive nursing care, the partnership has saved approximately $1 million in Medicaid nursing home costs annually.”
Tax credits are awarded over a ten-year-period through the federal housing tax credit program. In exchange for receiving the tax credits, developers agree to reserve a portion of their housing units for lower- and moderate-income households for at least 15 years. Remaining units may be rented at market rates to seniors and families without income limits.
Tax credit developments must meet high design and operating standards. Criteria include strong management, excellent development quality, demonstrated market need, provision of services and amenities, proper local zoning and permits and service to households at various income levels.
WHEDA is a public body corporate and politic created in 1972 by the Wisconsin Legislature that provides low‐cost financing for housing, small business and agricultural development. Over the past 40 years WHEDA has financed more than 68,000 affordable rental units, helped more than 110,000 families purchase their first homes, and made more than 29,000 small business and agricultural loan guarantees. For more information, visit wheda.com or call 1-800-334-6873.