FORT WORTH, TX – March 24, 2010 – (RealEstateRama) — U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan announced today that 351 public housing authorities in Texas successfully met a critical funding deadline outlined in the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act of 2009 (Recovery Act). As a result, the $118,274,749 in Public Housing Capital Improvement Funds awarded to them through ARRA one year ago are being used to make significant improvements to more than 6700 public housing units in Texas, creating 562 jobs and growing the economy. On March 17, 2009, HUD provided nearly $3 billion in Public Housing Capital funds to 3,100 public housing authorities nationwide. The funds were allocated through an established formula, and effectively doubled the Department’s annual support of local housing authorities.
Specific guidelines in the law required that all funding awarded to public housing be “obligated” (committed to specific projects or activities) one year after it was awarded, or the funding would be recaptured by HUD and redistributed to other agencies in compliance with the requirements.
“Strict deadlines, such as this one, were written into the Recovery Act to ensure that funds would be used to meet the top goal of putting Americans back to work as quickly as possible,” said Donovan. “I am proud of the work HUD and public housing authorities across the country did to meet this critical deadline. It speaks to the commitment they have to improve affordable housing and grow local economies. Families and communities are already seeing new windows, roofs, cost-saving energy-efficient appliances, and much-needed jobs.”
To date, public housing authorities in Texas reported creating 562 jobs and developing or rehabilitating 6754 public housing units in hard-hit neighborhoods.
All public housing authorities in Texas were able to meet the one year deadline by either obligating 100% of their funds or voluntarily returning all, or a portion, of their funds by the deadline. Of the $2.9 billion that was awarded to 3,134 public housing authorities nationally, $2.9 billion has been obligated and $3.2 million was voluntarily returned. HUD is currently determining the redistribution process for the funding returned. Of the 172 “troubled” housing authorities that received funding, only two returned all or a portion of their funds by March 17th.
In addition, Secretary Donovan and the Department are committed to providing the highest level of transparency possible as Recovery Act funds are administered. It is vitally important that the American people are fully aware of how their tax dollars are being spent and can hold their federal leaders accountable. Every dollar of Recovery Act funds HUD spends can be reviewed and tracked at HUD’s Recovery Act website. The full text of HUD’s funding notices and tracking of future performance of these grants is also available at HUD’s Recovery Act website.
HUD is the nation’s housing agency committed to sustaining homeownership; creating affordable housing opportunities for low-income Americans; and supporting the homeless, elderly, people with disabilities and people living with AIDS. The Department also promotes economic and community development and enforces the nation’s fair housing laws. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet at www.hud.gov and espanol.hud.gov.