The City of Austin has announced added opportunities for public comment on draft recommendations to spend approximately $7.2 million in U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) funding for programs to prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus under the ''Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.”
The comment period has been extended to May 13, 2020 on the Draft Funding Recommendations for U.S. HUD Coronavirus Response, both through the SpeakUp Austin website and by postal mail and email (described below). A Spanish version of the recommendations can be found here. The Neighborhood Housing and Community Development Department (NHCD) has also a HUD Funding webpage with more detailed information about the proposal and opportunities for public review.
NOTE: The draft funding proposals reflect staff recommendations to address community needs responsive to COVID-19. Recommendations as to how best to fund these proposals may change based on funding availability from a range of sources to address these community needs.
Comments also will be possible via a special videoconferencing meeting of the Community Development Commission (CDC), scheduled for Wednesday, May 13, 2020, from 3:00 to 4:30 p.m. Instructions for participation during the virtual public hearing can be found on the Community Development Commission website.
In addition to the HUD funding recommendations, the public is also encouraged to comment on Amendments to the Citizen Participation Plan (CPP) which outlines how the City encourages community members to help develop federal spending recommendations. To expedite receipt of HUD funding from the CARES Act, HUD recommended updating the City’s CPP to add a section regarding Disaster Response and Recovery Funds. The proposed amendments to the CPP can be found here. A Spanish version of the amendments can be found here.
Background on Funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
On March 27, 2020, the federal CARES Act was signed into law, which authorized funding to be deployed by HUD through three programs: Community Development Block Grant-coronavirus response (CDBG-CV), Emergency Solutions Grant-coronavirus response (ESG-CV), and Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS-coronavirus response (HOPWA-CV).
To set priorities and develop recommendations for the use of CARES Act funding, the City recently sought public input on the community’s needs and service gaps. Public input was received through a public hearing before Austin City Council on April 23, as well as online via the SpeakUp Austin website, by email, calls to NHCD and the City’s 2-1-1 phone lines, and postal mail. In addition, feedback was also received from the City of Austin’s Recovery Panel, which includes staff from multiple departments who are involved in recovery efforts. The result from those comments formed the current draft recommendations.
Online and Mail Comments on Draft Recommendations and Citizen Participation Plan Amendments
Opportunities to provide feedback on the Draft Funding Recommendations for U.S. HUD Coronavirus Response, and the amendments to the CPP are described below.
Submit by Postal Mail:
Neighborhood Housing and Community Development Department
Attn: HUD Coronavirus Spending Plan and CPP Amendments
P.O. Box 1088
Austin, Texas 78767
Submit by Email:
Subject Heading: HUD Coronavirus Spending Plan and CPP Amendments