Northern Arapaho Tribe Receives $5 Million Affordable Housing Grant

Dec 20, 2019

Credit Northern Arapaho Tribal Housing

The Northern Arapaho Tribe has been awarded a nearly $5 million federal grant to develop affordable housing on the Wind River Reservation.

More than 200 tribal housing authorities applied for the funding, which comes from the Department of Housing and Urban Development's  Indian Housing Block Grant Program. The Northern Arapaho Tribe's was one of 52 that made the cut.

Executive Director of Northern Arapaho Housing Patrick Goggles said his department will use the funds to build 20 three and four-bedroom homes in the Great Plains area of Arapahoe.

"Our application was successful because we had a plan," Goggles said. "We had a good track record with previous [federal grants], we have clean audits, we have a solid management structure."

They were able to convey what Goggles called an "acute need" for affordable, single-family homes on Wind River.

"Among the Northern Arapaho Tribe, we maintain a waiting list of about 180 families. And about that same amount don't apply because of the length of the waiting list," Goggles said.

Northern Arapaho Tribal Housing has completed the planning and pre-development stage, including an environmental impact study. Goggles said they plan to begin work on infrastructure for the housing cluster in the spring of 2020 and unit construction by summer. The project is scheduled to be completed within two to three years. 

In total, the Department of Housing and Urban Development awarded nearly $200 million to 52 tribal housing authorities in this wave of Indian Housing Block Grant Funding. In December 10 video announcement, HUD Secretary Ben Carson said that will pay for the construction of 1,200 homes on tribal lands across 16 states, plus maintenance on existing tribal housing.

"Here at HUD, we are excited for this new opportunity to better serve Native American communities through our government-to-government relationship with the Tribes," Carson said "I look forward to seeing the meaningful work that Tribes will accomplish through this much-needed investment."

Have a question about this story? Contact the reporter, Savannah Maher, at smaher4@uwyo.edu.