The District of Columbia Housing Authority has successfully allocated $33 million in tax credits that empower communities by offering them a wide range of new opportunities.
By focusing specifically on Wards 7 and 8, DCHA’s New Markets Tax Credit program helped to fund construction at three charter schools and one employment training center.
“DCHA believes in economic development that is equitable and impactful. We are making investments that will help the communities we serve through jobs and additional educational options,” said Terri Thompson, chairman of DCHA’s Board of Commissioners. “True community development comes when mixed-income communities that have valuable resources are created. Those resources, such as schools and training facilities, help shape and build a vibrant community.”
The District of Columbia Housing Enterprises, a subsidiary of the D.C. Housing Authority, administers the NMTC program that assists schools, community facilities, and other vital commercial and business development that can strengthen distressed neighborhoods, but often have difficulty getting financing from traditional sources.
The four projects that received a total of $33 million in NMTC financing created 500 permanent jobs and 1,100 construction jobs. DCHA’s Office of Resident Services continues to collaborate with project sponsors to place DCHA residents in positions as they become available.
The most recent award of $7.9 million to Achievement Prep Charter Schools supports the recent renovation and expansion at the school. The school’s expansion increased the student population from 400 to 950 elementary and middle school scholars. The charter school is rated among the best of D.C.’s tier one charter schools and is adjacent to DCHA’s Highland Dwellings community.
“Achievement Prep is a diamond in the rough. This high achieving institution in the heart of Ward 8 is outperforming schools in more affluent areas,” said Shirley Boubert, DCHA’s NMTC Manager. “To me, what is most impressive is the core location, the dedication of the staff, and the performance of the students.”
In addition to serving children who live in DCHA communities, the school also is working to offer more jobs. DCHA will work with the school and surrounding communities to hold outreach sessions to explain the application and lottery process in order to increase the amount of students who reside in DCHA-assisted housing.
Previously, DCHA helped fund the Conway Center’s Employment Training Center with $11.3 million in tax credits. The center, which is part of an affordable housing complex that also features a health clinic, will train 300 individuals annually. DCHA’s NMTC allocation for $7.7 million also helped KIPP DC Hamilton Campus High School to construct a new athletic field at their recently built high school. This is KIPP DC’s first high school campus in the District. DCHA also supported Two Rivers Charles Young Elementary with a $6 million allocation for their gut rehabilitation; the school is adjacent to DCHA’s Langston Dwellings community. The next NMTC allocation round award announcements is expected this winter. DCHA will also host its annual NMTC symposium next spring for organizations and businesses interested in using NMTC for their projects.
The NMTC webpage was launched earlier this month and we encourage you to visit us at www.dchousing.org/nmtc to learn more about the program and funding opportunities.