KAAP loses funding

The time for submission of architectural plans - one of the requirements to qualify for $392,000 in funds from the Governors Office of Housing Development - has come and gone, thereby nullifying an offer that would have allowed expansion of the existing Kingman Aid to Abused People shelter.

Funds - in the form of a forgivable loan - for the expansion of the KAAP shelter had been approved pending certain contingencies.

One of the requirements was that architectural plans be submitted and approved by the city of Kingman before funds could be released.

In August 2001, Kingman resident Dave Varga was hired as the project architect.

For about a year he worked with the KAAP board of directors developing ideas and in June 2002 was paid $27,000 to complete the plans, said KAAP executive director Nancy Head.

Construction of the project was scheduled to begin in February or March of this year, with completion scheduled for July or August if everything went according to schedule.

However, everything did not go as planned.

In December 2002, Head became nervous that architectural plans were not yet completed and after a few phone calls learned that Varga had moved to Utah.

In the ensuing months Head and the KAAP board became even more anxious when, after repeated attempts to get completed plans delivered, they were still empty handed.

Meanwhile the Arizona Department of Housing issued an edict that the final site plan must be approved by the city by July 18, 2003, and that KAAP must submit documentation by Aug.

18.

The deadline was later extended to Aug.

19.

Head finally received plans and turned them into the city Aug.

18, but there were items missing so the plans were not approved, she said.

The state housing funds in the amount of $392,000 were to be used for remodeling and expansion of KAAP, a domestic violence shelter where women and children can stay for up to 120 days.

"However, the state has said they want us to build this shelter," Head said.

KAAP can reapply for the funds before Oct.

31 if someone donates land to the non-profit organization to build a separate shelter.

"We need to pick up the ball and run very quickly with it," Head said of the current offer.

Head said Bullhead City architect Helmet Rabis has agreed to donate services to complete plans for an additional separate seven-bedroom KAAP shelter for woman and children.

If and when the new facility is built the current KAAP shelter would be for single women only, Head said.

KAAP board member Lorraine Carter said the additional shelter is desperately needed to help the victims of domestic violence.

Head said the shelter broke all records in August when 34 women and children stayed at the shelter.

"We did not have enough room," she said.

"We had to put some in motels the same day because we ran out of room."

Carter said she is counting on someone to come forward to offer and acre or more parcel of land to build the additional shelter and keep the funds in place.

Otherwise, the shelter will lose funding from the Arizona Department of Housing.

Head said the loss of funds would also affect next year's funding, because funding is based on bed nights at the shelter.

"That is why this is so important," she said.

The shelter, which offers a safe haven for victims of domestic violence, gets no operating funds from the city of Kingman or from Mohave County.

The shelter operates solely on grants from the Arizona Department of Economic Security, the Victim of Crime Act, and the Arizona Department of Public Safety, United Way and Arizona Criminal Justice Commission, along with and private donations.

KAAP is open 24 hours a day and has a 24-hour crisis line for victims of domestic violence.

Clients receive free shelter, food, clothing and a variety of other needs while they try to get their lives back on track after a domestic violence situation.

A staff of 13 helps clients with a variety of services including transportation, therapy and case management.