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Sunnyside Housing Authority to receive Recovery Act funds

Earlier this week U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) announced that Washington state will receive more than $40 million for public housing improvement projects throughout the state as part of the American Economic Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

Of that $40 million Washington state will receive, the Sunnyside Housing Authority will get $259,402 for its programs.

As Chairman of the Senate Housing Appropriations Subcommittee, Murray worked to ensure that job-creating investments in Washington's local housing agencies were a key component of the Recovery Act. Sen. Murray voted to pass the Recovery Act on Feb. 13. The bill was signed into law by President Obama on Feb. 17.

"This will be a shot in the arm for communities throughout our state," said Sen. Murray. "In the face of an ongoing recession, this funding will help create local jobs, provided better and more affordable housing, and help struggling families meet their most basic needs."

Kelly Nielsen, finance director for the Sunnyside Housing Authority, said her office has received word from HUD that they will be getting the funds.

Nielsen said the grant is on an accelerated time frame and the funds could arrive as early as the end of this month.

She didn't have specifics on what the grant money would be spent on but said the Sunnyside Housing Authority creates a five-year plan each year that lists all the projects that will be completed with grant money.

"We will take items from the five-year plan to expend the funds," she said. "Some projects that were planned for four or five years down the road will now be completed sooner."

Asked if this will help the city of Sunnyside, Nielsen said that anytime you have a quarter of a million dollars going directly into the local economy, it's going to help.

"We're excited about this," Nielsen added.

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