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HUD affordability period and if the Down Payment Assistance Program begins again it is virtually certain that the City of Sarasota would have to repay funds from its general fund to the federal government." Snyder added in his letter that the City Commission would prefer an amendment to the Sarasota Action Plan to eliminate HOME funding for the Down Payment Assistance Program. The city also wanted to move the $600,000 set aside for down payment assistance into the Housing Rehabilitation Program, the letter said. "HUD does not have an affordability period for homes repaired with HOME funds and so the financial risk described above would no longer exist," the letter says. If the County Commission does not want to support the reallocation of the funds, Snyder continued, the City Commission wants the County Commission to indemnify the City of Sarasota "for any Down Payment Assistance loans that HUD ultimately determines do not complete the entire required affordabil- ity period." "I don't even want to be on the hook for our percentage of [any repayments]," Commissioner Nora Patterson said on July 9. "I think it's ridiculous." The county should ask its national lobbying firm to address the issue, she added. "I agree with you," Hadsell responded, adding that he had just attended a meeting of com- munity development directors from across the country. "One of the big concerns that everyone has is the severe limitations that are being put on the HOME program," he said. However, Hadsell continued, "The problem is moving anything through Congress right now." Snyder's letter pointed out that the interlocal agreement between the city and county that established the Sarasota Office of Housing and Community Development "requires the City Commission and County Commission to agree on the uses of HOME funds so it is important that we reach an agreement on the use of [them] quickly so that OHCD can begin to obligate HOME funds to our residents in need and meet the federal deadline for the commitment of funds." That deadline is Oct. 31, the letter noted. Patterson made the motion to advertise the amendment to the Sarasota Action Plan. Commissioner Carolyn Mason sec- onded it. % For the best viewing experience on a computer click the icon in the menubar to zoom to fullscreen mode. QUICK TIP Sarasota News Leader July 25, 2014 Page 64

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