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Residents in a tiny U.K. village are upset that their council has agreed to purchase an estate for more than $2 million (£1.8 million), where prices for each individual house are nearly double that of local homeowners.
Locals from the rural town of Langtoft, Lincolnshire, England, are reportedly crying out over plans to house Afghan and Ukrainian refugee families in the village with a population just over 2,000, as of 2011 census reports.
The Daily Mail reported that while the average property prices in the village are just over $500,000 (£400,000), the houses the local government purchased are worth more than $890,000 (£700,000).
The South Kesteven District Council, however, purchased an estate with 12 houses using joint funding from the Government's Local Authority Housing Fund and the Council's Housing Revenue Account budget.
The homes are a mix of both two and three-bedroom houses, some that were brand-new and others that were already pinned for social housing.
The housing developer described the houses as 41 "high-specification homes" that are in a "beautiful rural location," with three of the houses listed for sale at the equivalent of $763,000-$916,000.
The local government isn't finished after the 12 houses, either. It has allotted over $5.6 million (£4.4 million) for a total of 21 properties for its refugee placement program.
The funding comes from a $637 million (£500 million) gift from the federal government to house legal evacuees until their visas expire, approximately three to five years after their arrival.
Local 74-year-old resident Liz Jarman said residents of Langtoft have "not been given one chance" to buy any of the houses in the development.
The woman also said that it is "wonderful" that the government is housing refugees but is angry that her town was chosen as the location.
Another unnamed resident said that the people in the town are "struggling to get on the housing ladder and yet they find room for refugees."
"They should be going to bigger towns and cities where there's a bigger housing stock," they added.
Others locals gave statements in support of the free housing for refugees.
"They have got to go somewhere, and I for one would welcome them," said 44-year-old Liam Dodds.
"Some of these people have gone through suffering you couldn't imagine, so I think we need to put things into perspective and help where we can. They are probably desperate families looking to catch a break; this is the least we can do for them."
Local councilor Phil Dilks, who is also a cabinet member for housing and planning, said that the "original report was shared and fully supported at full council."
"Specifics on location [were] shared at the earliest appropriate time in line with procedure for this or any other acquisition."
The council added that homes will be given to the refugees first and then given to families on their council housing register second.
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