Non-profit seeks to build apt. for disabled in Blan

By John Hamilton -

BLANCHESTER — A new apartment is in the works for Blanchester.

Scott Boone and Linda Tucker of New Housing Ohio (NHO) spoke at Thursday’s village council meeting about the building that would be located off Cherry Street.

The two asked council if they would provide $500 to cover application fees for their grant they need to turn in next week. The council approved covering the fees.

While the design isn’t finished, Boone said the building would be two stories, single-entry point, with 24 units and interior hallways.

“The building was designed for folks who are disabled,” said Boone. “It can be a wide range of folks who can apply for this.”

He also described it as a place for people who aren’t quite ready to be on their own yet.

He told council they wish to work with the community to come up with a final design for the building that they would like and would benefit them.

Mayor John Carman asked whether there would be a lockbox to the building and who would have access to it. Boone said there would be one and emergency services would be given access to it. He added it would more than likely be a keyless building using access cards instead of keys.

Police Chief Scott Reinbolt and Councilmember Lori Byrom — who is the administrator at the Laurels of Blanchester, also on Cherry Street — expressed concerns about making sure background checks and screenings are performed on applicants.

Tina Fischer, a local who is a board member on the Board of Directors for Mental Health Recovery Services of Warren & Clinton County, said there’s a strong need for assisted living facilities in the area.

Boone said that because the building would work more as a “traditional apartment complex,” they would go through similar screenings that apartments do.

According to NHO’s website, their mission is “to facilitate the development of affordable, supportive housing to people in need by providing a continuum of housing options for the mentally ill, developmentally disabled, addicted, formerly incarcerated, and homeless population.”

Boone is the President and CEO of NHO, and Tucker is Women’s Recovery House Coordinator who has worked with Blanchester in the past.

The $4 million construction project would rely on local construction companies, creating temporary jobs during construction and permanent jobs later. Journal file photo

By John Hamilton

Reach John Hamilton at 937-382-2574.

Reach John Hamilton at 937-382-2574.