Housing project hitting snags with funding

By Tony Parra: PNT Staff Writer

The possibility of a housing development in Roosevelt County is at least on hold after the project was denied for tax-credit funding.
Jonathan Reed of Jonathan Reed & Associates, a corporation based in Albuquerque, had his application denied by the New Mexico Mortgage Finance Authority to receive funding to help develop the project.
Reed was proposing to develop the Portales Highlands Senior Village with 72 townhouses, which would have been located east of the Roosevelt General Hospital.
Reed said the proposed townhouses would be rent-to-own. Out of the 72 townhouses, Reed said 60 would be eligible for low-income families under Housing and Urban Development income guidelines. Those houses would rent for $312 to $488 a month.
The remaining 12 townhouses would rent for market value, which is $615 to $700.
It is the second year in a row the NMMFA has denied a request from Reed to develop a housing project in Roosevelt County. Last year, Reed wanted to build the Portales Highlands Senior Village containing six acres of land at the west corner of Avenue T and New Mexico Highway 267.
Reed said he was more prepared this year and thought he had a much better application.
“It’s very frustrating,” Reed said about the process. “We’re not going to be able to bring a housing development to an area, which is going to see a significant job growth. Job growth should be taken into consideration more.”
Reed said housing projects in Pojoaque, Rio Grande, Las Cruces and Alamogordo were approved for tax-credit funding. Reed said he was docked in the ratings process for math errors and percentage miscalculations.
“It’s a very competitive process,” said Elisabeth Monaghans, NMMFA public information manager. “We only have a certain amount of money to work with. We allocate all of the money we have. Many communities in New Mexico are in dire need of a housing project. You can’t afford to make a mistake.”
Monaghans said the NMMFA had $3.4 million to work with under the tax-credit program. Monaghans said Reed can still apply to receive funding help from other NMMFA programs.
Reed said he will submit his application under another program, the federal HOME Investment Partnership program. The program funds are used to provide financing for development of affordable rental or special needs housing, through either new construction or acquisition and rehabilitation of existing properties.
“He can still apply for any of our other programs,” Monaghans said. “Jonathan is seasoned with the process. He is a great developer. We want to work with these developers. Unfortunately other developers had applications which came through clean.”
Reed said he has developed three housing projects in Gallup and three in Clovis.