Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Pasco drops Ten Oaks affordable housing plan

NEW PORT RICHEY — Reversing a 2008 decision, county commissioners this week rejected granting $700,000 to the Ten Oaks affordable housing development in Zephyrhills.

The development, originally planned with a second location in West Pasco, would have provided subsidized homes to teachers, police officers and other public employees earning a modest salary.

Although they committed the money three years ago to qualify for a state grant, commissioners on Tuesday said the funding deal had changed and the housing crash gave Pasco plenty of affordable homes in most areas.

"I don't see the market conditions anywhere near that situation (in 2008)," said Commissioner Jack Mariano. "Everything here has changed, so I'm not comfortable moving forward."

Commissioners voted 4-0 to reject making the grant. Commissioner Ted Schrader abstained from the discussion and vote because his brother is a co-owner of Ten Oaks.

Commissioners felt the county money might be better directed toward the East and Central Pasco Habitat for Humanity, which has committed to build 50 homes in the depressed Lacoochee area. The money came from the federal government with the intent of stabilizing blighted neighborhoods.

"That entire corridor is ripe for business, industrial and commercial," said David Lambert, a spokesman for the Withlacoochee River Electric Cooperative. "But one of the issues we've found with that area is substandard housing."

John Finnerty, president of the Habitat chapter, said his group is concentrating on a 14-block area in the middle of Lacoochee. The three-bedroom homes would be sold for $80,000, and the new owner would have to have a job and stable income.

In a memo to commissioners, Community Development director George Romagnoli noted that building homes in a relatively new subdivision like Ten Oaks "does not really stabilize neighborhoods hit hard by foreclosure."

The original plan called for $700,000 from the county, a land donation from the School Board and a $5 million grant from the state. The Legislature later rescinded that money. Ten Oaks and other winning applicants sued and got initial approval for half the original grant.

The county award was to come from a source of money that has since dried up. Also, the county would have had to nearly double the original grant to $1.3 million for the project to win final approval from the state.

County Attorney Jeff Steinsnyder said the board likely wouldn't face liability for changing its mind about the grant. "You're being asked for a different way to salvage this grant, and you don't have the money to do it," he said.

Pasco drops Ten Oaks affordable housing plan 04/20/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, April 20, 2011 9:01pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. 13-year-old Janessa's father holds memorial service at Rogers Middle School


    RIVERVIEW — About 100 people sat in the tile-floored multipurpose room Saturday at Rodgers Middle School where Janessa Shannon once sat as a student.

    A mourner embraces Nahshon Shannon after the memorial service for Nahshon’s daughter, Janessa, Saturday at Rodgers Middle School in Riverview.
  2. Trump: Aircraft carrier a symbol of America's might (w/video)


    NORFOLK, Va. — With praise and a blessing for the military, President Donald Trump helped hand over the USS Gerald R. Ford to the Navy on Saturday and said the state-of-the-art aircraft carrier will send a "100,000-ton message to the world" about America's military might when it is ultimately deployed.

    President Donald Trump commissions the USS Gerald R. Ford on Saturday in Norfolk, Va.
  3. Kushner discloses additional $10M in assets


    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner "inadvertently omitted" more than 70 assets worth at least $10.6 million from his personal financial disclosure reports, according to revised paperwork released Friday.

  4. Police: Errant U.S. bombing kills 12 Afghan security forces


    KABUL, Afghanistan — An errant U.S. airstrike confirmed by the Pentagon killed 12 Afghan National Police officers and wounded two others, as another 11 police were killed and six wounded in clashes with the Taliban, Afghan officials said Saturday.

  5. Races are reversed in a police killing, and again a family asks: Why?


    MINNEAPOLIS — There was something bad going on in the alleyway behind the house, she told her fiancé on the phone, someone who sounded as if she was in distress, maybe a rape. It was past 11 p.m., and most people on Washburn Avenue were furled in their beds.

    joint cutline 1 inch 1 inch of body type 1 inch 1 inch of body type 1 inch 1 inch of body type 1 inch 1 inch of body type 1 inch 1 inch of body type 1 inch 1 inch