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City Considers Plan to Offer Workers Housing Incentives

By Eileen Buckley

Buffalo, NY – Buffalo is working on the creation of an "employer assisted housing program" in an effort to get city workers to buy more homes in the city.

U.S. Senator Charles Schumer and Mayor Anthony Masiello says the city will begin talks with the mortgage lending company, Fannie Mae, to create an incentive program for city workers to purchase homes.

Mayor Masiello says he would like the program to be available to all city employees.

"To me, in a city that has probably one of the lowest home ownership rates in the country, this will be a major step in the direction of strengthening our tax base," Masiello said. "That's something we all want to do."

The program could include a number of incentives, like reductions on down payments and discounted mortgage rates.

A Fannie Mae official says it is one of their "most popular" programs, and that it has been successful in other cities for police, firefighters and school teachers.