Cherokee Nation Principal Chief-Elect Chuck Hoskin Jr. announced Thursday a $30 million plan that will repair hundreds of Cherokee homes, remodel community buildings and create construction jobs all across northeastern Oklahoma.
The Housing, Jobs and Sustainable Communities Act of 2019 is part of Hoskin’s first 100 days of office initiatives. Hoskin officially becomes Principal Chief on Aug. 14.
“We are focused on improving communities at the grassroots level within the Cherokee Nation. That means investing in our citizens’ homes and the community buildings where Cherokees gather,” Hoskin said. “The improvements mean our most vulnerable citizens, including low-income elderly and disabled Cherokees, can get the help they need after waiting sometimes years for assistance. Additionally, investing in our community buildings means state-of-the-art improvements, including solar power and other energy saving measures, to the places where many of our citizens of all ages gather.”
Additionally, the housing rehab construction will create a wide array of jobs for contractors, and those dollars will have a significant multiplier effect in local communities as goods and services are purchased. This strategic endeavor is forward-thinking and will add to Cherokee Nation’s continued investment in northeastern Oklahoma, he said.
The Cherokee Nation currently has 668 low-income Cherokee families needing housing rehabilitation, which includes the need for new roofs, HVAC, electrical, plumbing, wheel chair ramps or removing environmental hazards such as lead. More than 400 on the list are Cherokee elders or citizens with disabilities.