Hawaii County approves housing grant for residents affected by 2018 Kilauea eruption

Hawaii County approves housing grant for residents affected by 2018 Kilauea eruption
2018 Kilauea eruptions destroy property in Lower Puna (Image: GREG CHUNN)

HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - With many Puna residents still struggling with housing following the 2018 Kilauea eruption, the Hawaii County Council passed two measures to provide roughly $84 million in funding.

The council voted unanimously on Wednesday to authorize the Kilauea Housing Recovery Grant, which will address the unmet housing recovery needs of residents.

Money for the grant will come from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and will fund a Voluntary Housing Buyout Program and Housing Relocation Services Program.

The Buyout Program will prioritize properties that served as primary residences and applicants who are low to moderate-income.

The 2018 eruption destroyed 612 homes, including 294 primary residences.

County Councilmember Ashley Kierkiewicz said, “Many Puna residents are still struggling to resolve their housing situation upended by the 2018 eruption. Roll out of these programs will help those who need assistance and provide the county with the information it needs to work with the community to identify how best to position allocations in a way that supports high impact, long-lasting revitalization.”

The county encourages Puna residents affected by the eruption to complete the Kilauea Recovery Housing Survey by March 26.

The application process is anticipated to begin around April 30.

To access the survey, click here.

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