City Commissioners waive fees for planned senior, low-income housing project

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Manhattan City Commission held a revised agenda meeting on Wednesday to discuss waiving building permit and utility connection fees. The waived fees for MAHP ultimately passed four to one.

Manhattan purchased 35 clusters and three common areas in Lee Mill Village in August of 2017. The city has paid $62,000 in fees to date on the 21.5 acres of land, including the outstanding ad valorem, cost of sales and deed filing fees.

On Jan. 29, the city made an agreement with the Manhattan Area Housing Partnership to acquire 19 lots from the Lee Mill Village for development. On 18 of the lots, the city plans to build 26 affordable senior housing units. The remaining lot will be used for a clubhouse.

Mayor Michael Dodson’s biggest concern was the cost.

“I’d like to see the marginal costs and the total savings,” Dodson said.

The target group is individuals aged 55 and older a median income in the mid-percentiles. The total development is expected to cost $7 million. MAHP has promised to cover $20,000 per lot. The city will cover approximately $30,000 per lot.

Commissioner Jerred McKee was supportive of the project. He said he felt he wouldn’t be doing his duty if he didn’t support low-income housing.

McKee also said unless the city can find extra sources of revenue, projects like this won’t happen.

City Commissioner Wynn Butler was against the proposed project.

“My suggestion is to promote the building fees but not the water part,” said Butler.

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