On Centre: Around Philipsburg | Housing group helps build homes

A house is a house, but a home is special. A Philipsburg group has been working to help make houses homes for more than 15 years.

The Moshannon Valley Economic Development Partnership is usually associated with business and industry. They operate the enterprise center in the former cigar plant in North Philipsburg. They built the industrial park on the hill along U.S. Route 322 in Rush Township. They have been instrumental in almost every big business venture in or around Philipsburg for two decades.

But since the late 1990s, they have also been the agency that helps low-income homeowners make important repairs to their dwellings.

The Housing Rehabilitation program gives grants on a first-come, first-served basis to help do things like put on new roofs, upgrade old wiring, install better heating systems or fix plumbing issues. The grants go up to $18,000 and can cover up to 100 percent of a project, depending on the family income.

A current round of funding in Clearfield County has room for approximately 2-3 more families. A new round was recently signed off with Philipsburg, opening up opportunities for Philipsburg and Rush Township homeowners to participate.

MVEDP executive director Stan LaFuria said that with the new round of funding, the program will have given his organization a chance to help as many as 176 families over the years.