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Construction of a 24-unit apartment complex is being delayed a year because developers failed to obtain state funding.

Robert Quinn of TRA Development Ltd., a Williamsville company, planned groundbreaking this month for Wilson Country Estates II for a 5.5-acre site off Autumnview Drive, adjacent to the original Wilson Country Estates.

Quinn said he applied in January to the state Division of Housing and Community Renewal for about $650,000 in aid, but did not receive the funds.

The federal Rural Development Administration has already approved $350,000 toward the $1.6 million project. However, Quinn said that money will be released only if the state funding comes through.

Division of Housing spokeswoman Donna Ackerman said, "There's a rating and ranking process. . . . They didn't have a high enough score."

Ms. Ackerman said TRA applied for money from the state Housing Trust Fund and for tax credits.

Quinn said his understanding was that the problem with his application was that the land was not properly zoned for multiple dwellings at the time he applied. It has since been rezoned.

Village of Wilson Mayor Jerry L. Dean said, "We already passed it all the way through. He's (Quinn) got everything he needs."

Ms. Ackerman said the Division of Housing will assist Quinn with a new application, if he wants. Quinn said he will apply again in January and hope to break ground in September 2000.

Dean said the project will be taxed at full value, adding about $1 million to the village and town tax base. The mayor said TRA is paying to install a 10-inch water line to the building, a fire hydrant, along with sidewalks and a road that will then be dedicated to the village for maintenance.

Although TRA will construct the complex, it will be managed by Sage Management, a company headed by Niagara Falls Republican mayoral candidate Irene J. Elia. The owner will be Wilson Apartments Partnership, a joint venture between Quinn and Ms. Elia. Sage owns and operates the original Wilson Country Estates.

The existing structure is for senior citizens only. Part II would admit all ages, but would be meant for low- to moderate-income renters.

Incomes would be limited to $18,500 for a one-bedroom apartment, $23,000 for a two-bedroom unit. Rents would be subsidized by the state and federal governments.

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