Seventeen Supportive Housing Units to Be Created for Homeless Veterans.
Utica, NY - September 22, 2017 - Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the groundbreaking of a $3.2 million Central New York Veterans Outreach Housing Project in Utica. Once complete, the project will provide 17 units of supportive housing for homeless veterans. The housing project is part of the second phase of the Governor's historic $20 billion five-year plan to create or preserve more than 110,000 affordable and 6,000 supportive housing units in New York State.
"Our veterans put everything on the line to defend this state and this nation, and it is only right that we make sure they receive the resources and support they need when they return home," Governor Cuomo said. "These new supportive units will provide our veterans the housing and services they need, and I look forward to these honorable men and women feeling at home again in the Mohawk Valley."
The Utica Center for Development received $3.2 million from the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance's Homeless Housing and Assistance Program for the project. Construction includes converting vacant space on the third and fourth floors of the Utica Center for Development's Central New York Veterans Outreach Center into seven permanent supportive housing units and 10 transitional housing units.
The project is also supported by $35,000 in Community Development Block Grant funding from the City of Utica.
Support services will be provided to residents on site, including counseling, life skills, transportation, legal services, substance use and mental health services as needed, among others. The outreach center is the organization's signature program, serving as a one-stop facility for veterans residing throughout Oneida, Madison, Herkimer and Otsego counties.
CNY Veterans Outreach Center Executive Director Vincent Scalise said, "This has been a long-awaited day and we are grateful it is here. Nine years ago, we took site control of this property with the dream of adding housing units for our area Veterans. Over the course of the past nine year my staff and I work tirelessly to help Veterans and their families in need and today marks the beginning of a new era for the CNY Veterans Outreach Center."
New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance Commissioner Samuel D. Roberts said, "Supportive housing is a critical and proven tool in helping to stabilize the lives people experiencing homelessness. This project will address an important need among veterans and their families in Utica and the region."
New York State Division of Veterans' Affairs Director Eric J. Hesse said, "The New York Veterans Outreach Center already provides innumerable and valuable services for the Veterans of the Utica community. The addition of this housing at the Veterans Outreach Center by Governor Cuomo has ensured that these Veterans will have safe housing collocated with wraparound support services which will ease the transition for many of these Veterans back into their communities."
Senator Joseph Griffo said, "Making sure those who have served our country in the military have access to good, quality housing is a very important endeavor. This multi-million-dollar project, once completed, will help with those efforts by providing almost 20 housing units for homeless veterans in the area. This will help us to make sure many of the area's veterans have a safe place to live and I am looking forward to watching as this project progresses."
Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi said, "Many Mohawk Valley residents honorably served their country, but some are in need of support. This project will provide safe, supportive housing for veterans and their families, along with services they need. I have been pleased to help the Veterans Outreach Center as planning for this project has continued. The groundbreaking for this supportive housing project is truly a great milestone for our community, and for the brave men and women living in our region who served our country."
Oneida County Executive Anthony J. Picente Jr. said, "The service and sacrifice our veterans have made for this great country should always be held in the highest regard, and we should always do everything in our power to make sure they are taken care of. This project will make a real difference in assuring that our local veterans who are struggling receive the help they need. I want to thank Governor Cuomo for allocating this funding and allowing the Central New York Veterans Outreach Center to provide housing to our homeless veterans."
Utica Mayor Robert Palmieri said, "The City of Utica has been actively engaged in proactive efforts to eliminate homelessness, especially for those who serve our country. We proudly joined the Mayors Challenge to End Veteran's Homelessness and this announcement is another example of Governor Cuomo taking action to support veterans and providing them the resources and benefits they deserve."
The Central New York Veterans Outreach Housing Project is part of the largest investment in the creation and preservation of affordable housing, and efforts to end homelessness in the history of New York. The $20 billion five-year plan was announced by Governor Cuomo on May 18, 2017. Three state agencies have made available more than $650 million in capital funding and $30 million in service and operating funding for supportive housing.