Austin City Council today approved a proposal for the use of $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.
City staff developed the recommendations following a two-stage public comment process that first determined community needs and was then informed by public feedback to propose activities for HUD CARES Act funding to meet community needs. A more detailed description of the process is available on the HUD Funding webpage. Allocations approved by Council included:
Community Development Block Grant-Coronavirus Response Funding:
- Approximately $2.6 million for emergency rental assistance for low- and moderate-income households impacted by the economic impacts of COVID-19. Funds would be available for no more than three consecutive months.
- Roughly $1 million sustain the child care workforce in response to coronavirus, avoid job loss caused by decreased enrollment of children in child care; incentivize overnight and weekend child care for essential workers by providing short-term working capital assistance to small businesses to enable retention of jobs held by low- and moderate-income persons; respite care for children whose parents or guardians are hospitalized or quarantined; and health and safety supplies needed for child care programs to operate during COVID-19 pandemic.
- Approximately $1 million for homelessness assistance to prevent, prepare for, and mitigate the economic effects of Coronavirus. These funds will be programmed in direct response to Coronavirus relief in the broader context of the City’s homeless strategy
Emergency Solutions Grant-Coronavirus Response Funding:
- Approximately $2.3 million for homelessness assistance and to procure goods and services to prevent, prepare for, and mitigate the economic effects of Coronavirus.
Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS-Coronavirus Response Funding:
- Approximately $270,000 for services for the HOPWA program, including payments for short-term rent, mortgage and utility assistance, tenant based rental assistance, hotel/motel voucher assistance, permanent housing placement, facility-based housing, master leasing, supportive services, and housing case management.
“Given Council’s approval of staff’s recommendation for use of these dollars specifically addressing COVID-19 relief, the plan will now be submitted to HUD for approval. It is anticipated these dollars will be authorized by HUD in the coming months. We recognize these resources are crucial in continuing to address the needs of our community,” said NHCD Director Rosie Truelove.
For more information about the recommendations and the procedures for applying for programs funded through the HUD CARES Act funding when they become operational, contact NHCD@austintexas.gov.