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Charlotte Area

City considers funding to give homeless families six-month housing

http://66.225.205.104/JR20081208.mp3

With Charlotte's homeless population hitting record numbers, the local nonprofits and city officials are on the verge of offering more stable housing to families without homes. The plan is to turn Hall House - which is owned by the Charlotte Housing Authority - into a six-month residence for about 100 homeless families. The Housing Authority planned to sell the apartment building on North Tryon, but the deal fell through and it doesn't expect another decent offer until the economy improves. Meanwhile, The Salvation Army's Deronda Metz says the vacant apartments would be an excellent place for homeless families with school-age children. "We thought that would be a nice Christmas gift to be able to get into a safe place and get out of hotels or living in cars or having to go from house to house or getting turned down at a shelter and not knowing where to go," says Metz. Metz says the families would stay in Hall House rent-free until school got out in June. Factor in food and counseling services and Metz says the project will cost about $700,000. The Charlotte Housing Authority plans to contribute $160,000 operating the building through the winter. Tonight it will join with Metz in asking the City Council for an additional $160,000.