HUD Archives: News Releases


HUD No. 06-122
Sheryl Miller
(605) 330-4223
For Release
Wednesday
September 27, 2006

BUSH ADMINISTRATION ANNOUNCES $39.1 MILLION IN HOUSING COUNSELING GRANTS TO MORE THAN 400 STATE AND LOCAL AGENCIES
$175,000 awarded directly to 2 agencies in South Dakota

WASHINGTON - Approximately 850,000 families will have a greater opportunity to find housing or keep the homes
they have because of more than $39 million in housing counseling grants announced today by Housing and Urban Development Secretary Alphonso Jackson.

In South Dakota the South Dakota Housing Development Authority was awarded $120,260 and the Oglala Sioux Tribe Partnership for Housing was awarded $54,391. Additionally other local agencies in South Dakota will receive funding through national agencies that received awards.

These grants will assist families in becoming first-time homeowners or remaining homeowners after their purchase. Renters and homeless individuals and families will also benefit from the counseling offered by the grants. Grants were awarded to 17 national and regional organizations and more than 400 state and local housing counseling agencies.

"Under the Bush Administration, more families are receiving housing counseling services than ever before, and more
are purchasing and keeping their homes," said Jackson. "The organizations providing these services are helping to meet the President's goal of increasing homeownership opportunities, particularly for minorities."

National and regional agencies distribute much of the HUD funding to community-based grassroots organizations that provide advice and guidance to low- and moderate-income families seeking to improve their housing conditions. In addition, these larger organizations help improve the quality of housing counseling services and enhance coordination among other counseling providers.

Of the more than $39 million in housing counseling grants, $3 million is being awarded in supplemental funding for
Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) counseling. These funds will provide counseling for the rapidly growing number of elderly homeowners who seek to convert equity in their homes into income that can be used to pay for home improvements, medical costs, and other living expenses.

The organizations that provide housing counseling services help people become or remain homeowners or find rental housing. Grant recipients help homebuyers and homeowners realistically evaluate their readiness for a home purchase, understand their financing and downpayment options, and navigate what can be an extremely confusing and difficult process. Grantees also help combat predatory lending by helping unwary borrowers avoid unreasonably high interest rates, inflated appraisals, unaffordable repayment terms, and other conditions that can result in a loss of equity, increased debt, default, and even foreclosure. Moreover, HUD-funded housing counseling agencies assist homeless persons to find the transitional housing they need to move toward a permanent place to live.

HUD awards annual grants under the housing counseling program through a competitive process. Organizations that apply for grants must be HUD-approved and are subject to biennial performance reviews to maintain their HUD-approved status.

HUD is the nation's housing agency committed to increasing homeownership, particularly among minorities; 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 as well as enforces the nation's fair housing laws. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet and espanol.hud.gov.

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SOUTH DAKOTA

Oglala Sioux Tribe Partnership for Housing, Inc.
Pine Ridge, SD
$54,391 - Comprehensive Counseling

The Oglala Sioux Tribe Partnership for Housing, Inc. (OSTPH, Inc.) is a nonprofit organization, which was approved
by the Oglala Sioux Lakota Tribal laws and incorporated in the State of South Dakota. OSTPH, Inc.'s primary mission
is to enhance and provide affordable homeownership opportunities to the tribal members of the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. OSTPH, Inc. has been working since 1999 to develop a Homeownership Program that will be feasible
and affordable for the tribal members of the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. OSTPH, Inc. has provided ongoing post housing counseling programs, after the home has been purchased. The OSTPH, Inc. realizes that due to the low-income history of tribal members, the occurrences of predatory lending are quite high. OSTPH, Inc. has developed a predatory lending program and will continue to provide that program to its tribal members to assist them with recognition and acknowledgement of predatory lending activities.

South Dakota Housing Development Authority
Pierre, SD
$120,260 - Comprehensive Counseling

Established in 1973, The South Dakota Housing Development Authority (SDHDA) offers residents a variety of affordable homeownership and rental housing opportunities. SDHDA also provides programs for developers made available through the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and housing tax credits made available through the US Department of Treasury, Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for both the rehabilitation and new construction of affordable housing. In addition, SDHDA has taken an active role in working to end homelessness in South Dakota. SDHDA is totally self-supporting and receives no tax money, appropriations or other funding from the State. For the past nine years SDHDA has administered HUD's Housing Counseling Grant Program for various housing counseling service providers statewide. SDHDA has disbursed more than $1,000,000 through this program benefiting nearly 27,000 South Dakota residents with housing counseling and education services.

 
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