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HUD Greenlights $5 Billion Texas Disaster Recovery Plan

On Monday, Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Dr. Ben Carson announced his approval of a $5 billion disaster recovery plan designed to help Texas continue its recovery operations after the impact of last year’s Hurricane Harvey. HUD Deputy Secretary Pamela Hughes Patenaude initially announced a $5 billion allocation of HUD fees to Texas in November 2017, funded through HUD’s Community Development Block Grant—Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) Program.

“The Trump Administration is committed to helping Texans impacted by Harvey to rebuild their homes and their lives,” Secretary Carson said. “As the State now turns to the long-term recovery of its communities, Texans can be sure that HUD will be there to help in any way we can to make the state whole again.”

The November allocation of funds required Texas to “develop a thoughtful recovery program informed by local residents,” according to today’s HUD press release. Per HUD’s statement, the approved disaster recovery plan includes numerous programs, including:

  • Single-Family Homeowner Assistance Program ($1.1 billion): Provides assistance to help homeowners with rehabilitation and reconstruction after Hurricane Harvey.
  • Buyouts and Acquisitions ($275 million): To allow certain eligible homeowners to sell their damaged home to a local government.
  • Affordable Rental ($250 million): Provides funding for rehabilitation, reconstruction and new construction of affordable multi-family rent properties.
  • Homeowner Reimbursement ($100 million): Homeowners may be reimbursed up to $50,000 for certain out-of-pocket expenses incurred for home repairs, including reconstruction, rehabilitation or mitigation.
  • Partial Repair and Essential Power for Sheltering ($73 million): Provides immediate, temporary repairs to homes that sustained less than $17,000 in FEMA-verified loss. CDBG-DR will be used as matching funds to FEMA expenditures.
  • Local Infrastructure ($413 million):  Supports infrastructure repairs and enhancements for local communities as part of a comprehensive long-term recovery program along with FEMA funding.
  • Economic Revitalization ($100 million): Offers interim assistance up to $250,000 to small businesses in exchange for job creation or retention.
  • Local, Regional, and State Planning ($137 million): The State will fund planning studies on disaster mitigation in the impacted areas to promote sound long-term recovery.
  • Allocations to City of Houston and Harris County ($2.2 billion): The State of Texas will provide $1.1 billion each to the City of Houston and Harris County, allowing these jurisdictions to address their unmet recovery needs.  Plans for use of these funds will be submitted by the city and county to the State for approval.
  • State Administration ($251 million): Funding set aside for the State’s program costs, including contract administration, compliance monitoring, the provision of technical assistance to applicants and subrecipients, etc.

To read more of DS News’ coverage of the impact and aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, click here.

About Author: David Wharton

David Wharton, Managing Editor at the Five Star Institute, is a graduate of the University of Texas at Arlington, where he received his B.A. in English and minored in Journalism. Wharton has over 15 years of experience in journalism and previously worked at Thomson Reuters, a multinational mass media and information firm, as Associate Content Editor, focusing on producing media content related to tax and accounting principles and government rules and regulations for accounting professionals. Wharton has an extensive and diversified portfolio of freelance material, with published contributions in both online and print media publications. Wharton and his family currently reside in Arlington, Texas. He can be reached at David.Wharton@theMReport.com.
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