Briarwood Estates introduction to be heard at Leesville City Council Meeting

Courtesy of Grant Bush

On Wednesday, December 30th at an advertised special meeting at Leesville City Hall, the Leesville Planning and Zoning Commission received and heard a request for permits to build a 38 house development on Sartor Street in Leesville. The subdivision will be an Income Housing Tax Credit type subdivision called Briarwood Estates developed by KWL Properties, LLC. KWL Properties, LLC has numerous like developments in Louisiana and Arkansas.

Briarwood Estates will be a state of the art affordable housing subdivision with a gated community, on site property management, camera security, and with a separated single family housing design. Accompanying the subdivision will be commercial suites for new businesses off Sartor Street near Boone Street. The development in detail is a Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) project. All LIHTC projects must comply with the LIHTC program rules for minimum of 30 years or longer. After year 15, however, Internal Revenue Service (IRS) regulations provide the owner an option for shortening the 30- year compliance period and exiting the LIHTC program early. This option is known as the qualified contract process. Under the qualified contract process, the property is listed for sale to try and locate a company that will buy the Briarwood Estates project and keep it enrolled in the LIHTC program. If a buyer is located within the one-year search period, the Briarwood Estates project will remain in the LIHTC program. If a buyer cannot be located, the Briarwood Estates project will be released from the LIHTC program and will no longer have income limits or limits on the amount of rent that can be charged to tenants. If a buyer is not located and the project is thus released from the LIHTC program, existing tenants at Briarwood Estates will have a three-year protection period. During this three year period, the owner is not allowed to increase the rent it charges to an amount that is above LIHTC guidelines. The owner will also not be allowed to evict or refuse to renew the lease agreements of existing tenants, unless there is good cause for doing so. The buyer search period for Briarwood Estates will end on an end date. After that date, the owner will notify tenants whether a buyer was located or not. If no buyer was located, the owner will tell the tenants about the three-year tenant protection period discussed above.

The request will move for an introduction to the Leesville City Council on January 25, 2021, at a regularly scheduled City Council meeting at 3:00 p.m. at the Leesville City Council Chamber located at 508 South 5 th Street in Leesville. For more information, contact the Leesville City Planning Department at (337) 404-4078 or if you wish to speak on this item on January 25th, please contact the Clerk of Council at (337) 239-2444 or email at sonny.harrell@leesvillela.gov.