Grant will help 75 veterans find housing in county

EVERETT — Of the homeless veterans in Snohomish County, 75 are set to receive permanent housing through a grant announced Tuesday by the state’s congressional delegation.

Rep. Rick Larsen, D-Wash., said the 75 housing vouchers worth a total of $585,873 were awarded through the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing Program. The Housing Authority of Snohomish County is to administer the vouchers.

“Too many local veterans are struggling with homelessness,” Larsen said in a statement Tuesday. “I take it as one of my highest responsibilities as a member of Congress to ensure that the brave women and men who served their country in the military get the support they have earned and deserve when they return home. These grants will help 75 Snohomish County veterans get permanent housing and on the path to independence.”

Bob Davis, the executive director of the Housing Authority of Snohomish County, said the vouchers are an important tool to get veterans off the streets and into permanent homes.

Housing authorities across the state will receive vouchers that can be used for rental assistance in the local communities. The Department of Veterans Affairs then works on outreach efforts to identify homeless veterans who need the vouchers. Each rental assistance voucher is valued at about $7,500 and provides rental assistance for a housing unit for a homeless veteran and any family members. In addition to the rental assistance, supportive services and case management are provided to eligible homeless veterans.

Sen. Patty Murray, chairman of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee, said that 325 housing vouchers are going to nine different housing authorities in the state.

“This is a huge boost for efforts to get homeless veterans in our state into stable housing,” Murray said in a statement. “Each one of these vouchers means a year’s rent for someone who has sacrificed for our nation but is now sleeping on our streets.”

About $75 million is to be distributed to public housing agencies across the country to an estimated 10,500 veterans.

Gale Fiege: 425-3393427; gfiege@heraldnet.com.

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