Hawaii County secures funds to buy homes destroyed in 2018 Kilauea eruption

Local News

Fissure 8, Kilauea, 2018 (COURTESY: BRUCE HOUGHTON)

HONOLULU (KHON2) — People whose homes were destroyed by the 2018 Kilauea eruption will be able to sell their homes to the county government for up to $230,000 thanks to a federal grant.

The Hawaii County Council passed two measures on Wednesday, March 3, to provide about $84 million in funding for recovery projects.

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The money for the grant will come from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Community Development Block Grant-Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) funds.

The grant was allocated in January 2020 to address unmet housing recovery needs from
the 2018 eruption that destroyed 612 homes, including 294 primary residences. It will fund a Voluntary Housing Buyout Program and Housing Relocation Services Program.

“These programs will help Puna residents displaced by the eruption secure stable housing
and recover financially,” Big Island Mayor Mitch Roth said in a news release on Wednesday. “In addition to these programs, the County will continue to apply recovery dollars to support initiatives that help the community recover and become more resilient.”

According to Hawaii County officials, the Voluntary Housing Buyout Program will prioritize properties that served as primary residences and applicants who are low-to-moderate income. The application process is expected to begin at the end of April.

Puna residents affected by the eruption are encouraged to complete a Kilauea Recovery
Housing Survey by March 26. Click here to access the survey.

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