400 Building, In Limbo
GAINESVILLE - The fate of the "400 Building" is still on the line. The building which houses disabled residents at a low cost, has been running at a loss for the past few years. And while some may worry about the outcome, board members say they are making sure the building will remain their home even if it is sold.
The Gainesville Housing Authority took ownership of the "400 Building" at the beginning of 2010. But now a bill has come due on the building for more than a million dollars. And even though there are options such as selling or refinancing. Gainesville Housing Authority officers tell me there's a reason for the delay.
"it's just the idea that we never know what's going to happen," Harold Raye a "400 Building" resident says. For about 5 months now disabled residents of the 400 building have been in limbo. The 400 building has a mortgage payment of 1.2 million dollars due. The Gainesville Housing Authority, the owners, have one of two options, refinancing the building something that hasn't been very successful or taking an offer. They currently have two offers on the line: One for 1.7 million dollars and another for 2 million.
Pamela Davis, the Executive Director for GHA says they are working with the mayor to make sure whatever they decide won't hurt the residents. "Both offers that we have received are saying they'll put a covenant on the agreement. Where they'll maintain the affordability of the unit for at least 20 years," she adds.
While for some residents the possible change may be a worry, for others such as Harold Raye, who's been living here for more than a year tells me he hopes the Gainesville Housing Authority will take care of the situation keeping the residents in mind first. Despite the wait, he's happy to hear both purchasers have agreed to keep the building affordable. "Try to make it. I don't have no worries. I mean, I have nothing to worry me," Raye says.
Davis said they don't know when they'll come up with a decision but they're taking their time with it because they want to make the right decision. "We'll continue to keep them in a dialogue and try to assure our residents as much as possible that we will not make any decision without giving them the time needed and also hearing their inputs," Davis said.
Davis also told me the next board meeting residents can attend, will take place at the 400 building sometime soon. The exact time and date will be announced later this month.
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