updated 9/9/2010 5:21:11 PM ET 2010-09-09T21:21:11

DALLAS, Sept. 9, 2010 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas (FHLB Dallas) is pleased to announce that it has awarded $1.5 million in Affordable Housing Program (AHP) grants, through its member institutions, to help fund the purchase, construction, or renovation of 187 housing units in Arkansas.

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The funding is part of the $18.5 million in AHP grants FHLB Dallas awarded in 2010. AHP grants are used to purchase, construct, or rehabilitate single-family, transitional, and multifamily projects for very low- to moderate-income families. This year is the 20th anniversary of the AHP, and the $18.5 million represents the largest amount the Bank has awarded in any single year of the program.

The Arkansas projects receiving AHP funding this year range from a transitional housing facility for homeless men, women, and children, to duplexes for very low-income seniors.

"Over the past 20 years, FHLB Dallas has been committed to assisting our members with the affordable housing needs in their communities," said FHLB Dallas President and CEO Terry Smith. "By providing a record-breaking $18.5 million in AHP grants this year, FHLB Dallas continues that commitment."

A majority of the AHP funding this year – nearly $12 million – was awarded to rental housing projects, like Oakwood Villa, a four-plex being built for elderly and disabled residents in Paragould, Arkansas. The Paragould Housing Authority received a $360,000 AHP grant through First National Bank in Paragould that will assist with the construction of Oakwood Villa.

Representatives of FHLB Dallas joined the housing authority and First National Bank at a check presentation for the project in August. Also present at the event were Paragould Mayor Mike Gaskill, Greene County Judge Jesse Dollars, and a representative from the office of Senator Blanche Lincoln (D – AR).

"The people in our society who need help more than anyone else are the very young, disabled, handicapped, or the very old," said Mayor Gaskill. "We're very, very appreciative of the fact that this money is coming to Paragould and we can enhance the opportunities for our residents who have become disabled or grown old."

Each year, FHLB Dallas returns 10 percent of its profits in the form of AHP grants made through its member institutions to assist in developing affordable owner-occupied and rental housing for very low- to moderate-income families and individuals throughout the Bank's five-state District of Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, and Texas. Since 1990, the Bank, through its members, has assisted more than 38,000 families with their affordable housing needs.

Below is a summary of the grants that were awarded to Arkansas projects, which total $1,501,629 for 187 units:

  • Habitat for Humanity of Saline County received $79,643, issued through Bank of the Ozarks, toward the construction costs for homes for eight very low-income families in Habitat's Partnership Village development in Benton.
  • Northwest Regional Housing Authority received $70,000, issued through Bank of the Ozarks, toward the construction, down payment assistance and closing costs for homes for 10 very low- to moderate-income homebuyers in Boone County, Arkansas.
  • Our House, Inc. received $376,986, through Summit Bank, toward the construction of a new transitional housing facility in Little Rock.
  • Community Resources Technicians, Inc. received $180,000, through IBERIABANK, fsb, toward providing down payment assistance and closing costs for 30 very low- and low-income, first-time homebuyers in Pulaski County.
  • Ouachita Senior Community Development LP received $100,000, issued through Bank of the Ozarks, toward the construction of an assisted living facility for very low- to low-income seniors in Mena.
  • Universal Housing Development Corporation received $140,000, issued through Bank of the Ozarks, toward the costs to rehabilitate 20 homes in Conway, Johnson, Pope, and Yell counties for very low-income homeowners.
  • Paragould Housing Authority received $360,000, issued through First National Bank, toward the construction of a four-plex for very low-income elderly and disabled residents in Paragould.
  • Southwest Arkansas Development Council received $140,000, issued through Bank of the Ozarks, toward a program that will assist very low- and low-income homeowners in Miller County with home repairs.
  • Fayetteville Housing Authority received $55,000, issued through Bank of the Ozarks, toward the rehabilitation of an apartment complex that serves very low-income residents in Fayetteville.

The Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=3013

Photos are also available via AP PhotoExpress.

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