Tipp City Council will be asked to approve the city’s participation in a partnership with Miami County, Piqua and Troy to seek grant dollars for housing programs for low and moderate income residents.

The Community Housing Impact Preservation (CHIP) program has been in existence in the county for a number of years providing money primarily for housing rehabilitation assistance and repair assistance. It is a federal program that is administered through the state.

Tipp City’s involvement in the program has been limited with money received through the county for three repair projects in the past 15 years, Brad Vath, assistant city manager, told council during a Feb. 6 work session.

Beginning this year, though, the city can apply individually to participate in CHIP or it can partner with the county and its other cities. Piqua and the county already are partners.

By applying as a partnership, the county would be eligible to apply for up to $1.6 million versus $850,000 currently.  Tipp City could receive a maximum $350,000 of that money. If the city applied for grants on its own, it could receive up to $200,000 in a grant cycle.

Vath said city staff had reviewed the program and options and would recommend the city join the county partnership. The program would be run either by the county or Piqua, a responsibility that has not been determined, he said.

“I think we need to work together on it,” he said. “The paperwork nightmare is insane for the CHIP program and there is no guarantee we would get money.”

The partnership option would minimize staff time and support regional cooperation, he said.

“It is just an additional benefit I think we can provide our residents and our rental homeowners. Hopefully some will take advantage of it,” Vath said.

He said the city staff had done some preliminary work on potential projects for the city.

Among them were residential home repairs such as roof and HVAC projects. Connections to the city sanitary sewer system in areas where some homes are not connected also was explored in the South Tipp-Cowlesville Road and part of the Woodlawn areas. Income guidelines would have to be met before money could be spent.

Rental property options for grants also were discussed in a meeting with rental owners in January, Vath said. Again, the eligibility would require falling within program income and rent guidelines. In addition, contractors used in any project would need to have state certification.