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      Dept. of Community Affairs closes Albany branch

      A downtown Albany office is closing its doors this November.

      The Georgia Department of Community Affairs is closing the Albany branch, however they're not closed for business.

      City Manager James Taylor along with Mayor Willie Adams and the Director of Community and Economic Development, Latoya Cutts, met with Dennis Williams of the Department of Community Affairs last week when they heard folks might lose their jobs after the closing of the Albany branch.

      We told him we were quite concerned about it and we wanted to do whatever we could to keep those jobs and those folks in our area because we have certainly a community that depends heavily on section 8 support, says Taylor.

      Section 8 provides rental housing assistance. Taylor says the department is closing the facility to save on costs and officials say about 16 individuals will either lose their job or be reassigned, if they are willing. The good news is section 8 services will still be offered, however, they just won't be offered out of the Albany office. Many of the employees will be working from home. And there's a possibility there may be room for those people in the city's new program.

      The city is beginning a tenant-based housing program project with the Albany Housing Authority. We hope that some of those people may be available, may be used in that project, says Taylor.

      Fox 31 tried several times to reach Dennis Williams with the Department of Community Affairs, but our calls were not returned.

      Speaking of job loss, you may have heard that Bank of America has also been hit hard, cutting 30,000 jobs nationally. We spoke with the main branch in Albany, who said as far as they know, they have no plans to let anyone go or close any branches.