Rep. Valadao, USDA RD State Director Tour Self-Help Enterprises' Wasco Subdivision
Highlight Importance of Federal, Local Partnerships to Strengthen Communities
Congressman David G. Valadao joined with USDA Rural Development State Director, Kim Dolbow Vann, and Self-Help Enterprises President and CEO, Tom Collishaw to tour the Self-Help Enterprises subdivision in Wasco.WASCO – Today, U.S. Congressman David G. Valadao (CA-21) joined with USDA Rural Development State Director, Kim Dolbow Vann, and Self-Help Enterprises President and CEO, Tom Collishaw to tour the Self-Help Enterprises subdivision in Wasco.
With support from Congress, ongoing partnerships between USDA and Self-Help Enterprises continue to create affordable housing and homeownership opportunities for hundreds of low-income families.
Through his position on the House Appropriations Committee, Congressman Valadao works to ensure the critical grant and funding programs Self-Help Enterprises relies on receive adequate funding. Since coming to Congress in 2013, Congressman Valadao has successfully advocated on behalf of increased funding for all five USDA RD programs utilized by Self-Help Enterprises, securing $8.75 billion in federal funding over the last six years.
Ten families are currently in the final stages of building their own homes in the Wasco subdivision and are expected to move-in in April. Ten additional families will soon join them as they are currently in beginning stages of construction on their self-help homes. Over a twelve-month period, the groups of families work together on nearly every aspect of the homes – from pouring foundations to framing homes – with direction from a skilled onsite construction supervisor. Each homeowner contributes a minimum of forty hours per week (over sixty five percent of the construction labor) toward completion of all homes in the group. These labor hours, or “sweat equity”, are used as the down payment on their new home, resulting in affordable monthly payments. The families receive their keys and move into their homes once all homes in the group are completed. The completion of the twenty homes will bring a total of 133 homes to Wasco since the first self-help houses were constructed in 1971.
Congressman David G. Valadao represents the 21st Congressional District, which includes Kings County and portions of Fresno, Tulare, and Kern Counties.