Yesterday, I had the opportunity to travel to Cincinnati, Ohio for the one year anniversary of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. While in Cincinnati, I visited the Forest Square development, which is a low-income housing development under construction using $1 million in Recovery Act Tax Credit Assistance (TCAP) funds. When complete, this project will consist of 21 affordable apartments for Cincinnati’s elderly residents.
In early 2009, when the project owner was unable to secure financing, the owner applied to the Ohio Housing Finance Agency (OHFA) for TCAP and Treasury Tax Credit Exchange (TCE) funds, both provided through the Recovery Act, to fill funding gaps. After OHFA awarded the project $1 million in TCAP funds and a TCE grant of $248,566, the project owner was able to close the financing and begin construction. Without the Recovery Act, the project owner may not have been able to move forward with the completion of the project. A total of 70 jobs are currently being created as a result of the project.
But most importantly, I was able to see firsthand how the Recovery Act has directly impacted many American families. I had the incredible opportunity to meet a construction worker named Will Straw while touring the project. Will was hired 5 months ago by the project developer, the Model Group, specifically for the Forest Square project. With 30 years of construction experience, Will had been unemployed a year and a half before joining the Model Group. He expressed to me how he, his wife and 3 sons are incredibly gratefully that the Recovery Act has enabled him to find work again.
Since day one, the Recovery Act has been working to address the greatest economic crisis since the Great Depression and lay a new foundation for economic growth. According to the Congressional Budget Office, the Recovery Act is already responsible for a many as 2.4 million jobs at the end of 2009. The Recovery Act funded- TCAP program is just one example of how recovery is already happening in communities across the country. TCAP is restarting stalled construction projects, creating jobs, revitalizing neighborhoods and providing affordable housing for low-income residents throughout the country. What I saw in Cincinnati yesterday is just one example of the economic recovery America is beginning to experience.