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Grants to assist with homeownership
$20M in federal pandemic funds will help build 91 homes
Gazette-Lee Des Moines Bureau
Dec. 1, 2022 5:22 pm
DES MOINES — Iowa will devote $20 million to expanding opportunities for homeownership using federal pandemic assistance funds, Gov. Kim Reynolds announced Thursday.
The Iowa Finance Authority will award grants to 15 organizations, including Habitat for Humanity, to assist with 91 homes across the state.
“We know that homeownership is the leading driver of wealth creation,” Gov. Reynolds said in a news release. “The investments announced today will … assist many Iowa families in opening the door to homeownership, upward economic mobility and the ability to live in the communities where they work.”
Habitat for Humanity of Iowa and several local affiliates received most of the grants, allowing for the construction of 69 homes to be sold to income-eligible families across the state.
“The awards made to Habitat for Humanity affiliates across the state will fuel a historic and transformational investment into sustainable homeownership opportunities for Iowans,” said Lisa Houser, executive director at Habitat for Humanity of Iowa.
“Habitat for Humanity of Iowa commends Gov. Reynolds’ commitment and leadership in advancing housing opportunities for Iowans.”
Probation for falsifying husband’s payroll
A former state employee will serve two years of probation and pay a fine of more than $57,000 after pleading guilty to second-degree theft, a Class D felony.
Renae Rapp, a former administrative assistant at the Iowa Civil Commitment Unit for Sexual Offenders, pleaded guilty in September to altering the timecards of her husband, who was a part-time employee at the unit. District Judge Carl Petersen sentenced Rapp on Monday.
According to an investigation by Iowa State Auditor Rob Sand’s office, Rapp used her husband’s key fob to adjust the payroll system, resulting in more than $52,000 in additional wages to her husband and nearly $9,000 in other payroll costs.
“This highlights the important work of the Auditor’s Office,” Sand said in a news release. “If you steal taxpayers’ money, we’ll catch you and you’ll be held accountable.”
State AGs settle with CarMax
Iowa will receive $20,589 in a multistate settlement with CarMax Auto Superstores, a used car sales company, Attorney General Tom Miller announced Thursday.
The lawsuit stemmed from the allegation that the company did not disclose open safety recalls to consumers when selling used cars.
The $1 million settlement was reached with 36 states.
The settlement set a standard that used car dealers should generally disclose open safety recalls to consumers before they bought cars, Miller’s office said in a news release Thursday.
CarMax will include links for vehicles sold online and QR codes in person linking to any open recalls on vehicles being sold.
“When buying a vehicle, Iowans have the expectation they are receiving reliable and accurate information from the dealer, especially when it comes to the safety of the vehicle,” Miller said in the release. “With this settlement, CarMax customers can know that they have complete information about any safety recalls that apply to their vehicle.”