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Thanks to Lycoming County commissioners

Our company recently celebrated the grand opening at Muncy Greene, the new affordable senior community we developed, built, and will own and operate on John Brady Drive in Muncy Township. We would like to thank the local community, specifically Lycoming County Commissioners R. Jack McKernan, Tony R. Mussare, and Richard Mirabito, for supporting this much-needed new affordable housing option for low- and moderate-income senior residents in the Lycoming County area.

The Lycoming County commissioners made a wise decision a few years ago when they leveraged $800,000 in PHARE funds, plus $50,000 in Act 137 Housing Funds, to attract the additional $13 million investment needed to transform the vacant and rough parcel of land into a needed senior affordable housing option that is now part of the tax base in Lycoming County.

The PHARE (Pennsylvania Housing Affordability and Rehabilitation Enhancement) program assists communities in creating affordable housing like Muncy Greene throughout Pennsylvania. Funding for PHARE is driven through multiple sources including impact fees in counties like Lycoming County where Marcellus Shale gas wells exist.

The Lycoming County commissioners’ allocation of $800,000 was a critical stepping stone in Muncy Greene’s successful application for tax credits through the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency. Obtaining the credits creates equity to finance the property and allows us to charge rents affordable for residents who earn up to 60% of the area median income. The process is highly competitive and only one out of every three to four applications receives an award of credits. One of the significant criteria used by the state housing agency to decide which communities win credits is the level of financial support provided by the local community. Without support from Lycoming County commissioners, there would have been no tax credits available and no Muncy Greene.

Before we cut the ribbon, I met many of the senior residents who are thrilled to be settling into their new apartments. Muncy Greene provides 60 one- and two-bedroom single level apartments with attached garages, no-step entrances, washer/dryer closets, EnergyStar appliances, and passive house energy-efficient design. Added amenities include a community center with a large clubroom, computer center, central laundry facilities, and a management office, plus outdoor walking pathways, a pond, and picnic pavilion. There will be senior wellness programs onsite and a new bus stop by River Valley Transit means residents who do not drive will be able to shop, worship, and get to the doctor without worries about transportation.

We are proud to provide a new affordable housing option for residents at Muncy Greene that will help seniors remain independent for years to come. The Lycoming County commissioners are to be congratulated for their vision and critical first steps in making this happen.

David Cooper, Jr.

Principal, Woda Cooper Companies, Inc.

Submitted via email

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