Thanks, taxpayer! You're the bestest! She really appreciates your $91,000 gift, and is going to send all of you a cookie bouquet. So will everyone else in this novel program. Makes you want to pay more in taxes, huh? Fantabulous! http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/local/broward/sfl-tamarac-housing-b052509,0,7723121.story *p.s. - that home is a dump. The seller wouldn't get more than $35,000 for it if they were lucky without this government waste. Homes for everyone!!!!! A home in every pot! Federal stimulus money allows Tamarac mom to buy first home By Lisa J. Huriash | South Florida Sun Sentinel May 25, 2009 Staci Gullett hopes to close on this home in Tamarac, making her one of the first families in Broward to participate in a national grant program funded through federal stimulus money to help people buy distressed properties. (Mike Stocker, S-S / May 21, 2009) TAMARAC - Even though she sees the pain of people struggling in this economy, Staci Gullett is poised to take a leap of faith. Gullett, 28, who works for the state unemployment office, deals all day long with people who sob on the telephone as they beg her to push their benefits through. But she's also seeing firsthand the benefits of a federal grant project meant to ease the nation's economic pain by getting distressed houses off the market and giving or lending people money to spend on them. Gullett will become one of Broward's first recipients of the Neighborhood Stabilization Program, the national housing rescue plan to help cities and states flip foreclosed homes, rent them out, or dole out grants to first-time home buyers. On June 19 she's closing on her first housing purchase, a two-bedroom with hardwood floors in Tamarac. "All I did was rent," Gullett said. "To buy my own home, it's wonderful. And I'll have a back yard." In Broward and Palm Beach counties, dozens of local governments have been awarded a total of $104 million to turn abandoned, foreclosed properties into occupied, tax-producing dwellings. Tamarac has $4.7 million to spend on down-payment assistance in some neighborhoods, such as Heathgate-Sunflower, Westwood, Mainlands, Vanguard Village and Concord Village. Gullett is a single mother of a 1-year-old daughter, Madison. With a salary "in the 20s" as a clerk for the state unemployment office, she meets the program's income guidelines. The house in the Mainlands neighborhood will cost her $133,000. The city, through a grant, is chipping in $91,300. Tamarac took in 80 applications for the program before cutting them off, said Jennifer Bramley, director of community development. The first three homes are expected to close in June, making Tamarac the first city in Broward to spend the stimulus money. Credit analyst David Cabrejo's company has announced layoffs. Still, the 23-year-old was afraid to pass up this chance to own his first home in Tamarac. "I'm definitely scared, but one man's tragedy is another man's treasure," he said. The city is chipping in $54,000 for the $138,000 (appraised at $165,000) house, provided he lives there for 10 years. "If you have the credit-worthiness to buy, you have to buy even though it's rough times and nothing is guaranteed," Cabrejo said. "It's the time to buy." Lisa J. Huriash can be reached at email@example.com or 954-572-2008.