HUD Archives: News Releases

HUD Region VI: 11-134
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For Release
August 23, 2011

Rural Innovation Grants will create jobs, build housing and stimulate economy

FORT WORTH - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development today awarded a $300,000 grant to Motivation Education and Training in New Caney. The grant is part of a national effort to address distressed housing conditions and concentrated poverty. HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan said the grants from HUD's new Rural
Innovation Fund
promote an 'entrepreneurial approach' to affordable housing and economic development in rural
areas. Overall, $28 million was awarded to 46 rural and tribal communities throughout the nation.

"Rural America is vast and diverse, and different communities face different challenges and opportunities," said Secretary Donovan. "Because there is no 'one-size-fits-all' approach to strengthening rural communities, this funding provides flexible resources to address either housing or economic development needs, or both. This is especially important for communities that may have more limited access to resources because of their distant locations. These are catalytic projects that will have an impact on their communities for generations to come."

Motivation Education & Training in New Caney will use its $300,000 Rural Innovation Fund Single Purpose grant to support the Rositas Colonias Farmworker Housing Rehabilitation and Training Project. The project will renovate or replace 10 homes in Maverick County that are owned and occupied by low-income farmworkers and located in disinvested colonias. The project will use green construction techniques and individuals may be able to replace units with energy-efficient manufactured homes. Thirty farmworkers will be trained in construction skills. Partners include Southwest Texas Junior College and the National Farmworker Jobs Program. Leveraging for this project is $153,000. Contact: Francisco Esparza, (281) 689-5544.

HUD's new Rural Innovation Fund offers grants of up to $2 million to support innovative housing and economic development activities. Eligible applicants were federally recognized Indian tribes, state housing finance agencies (HFAs), state community development agencies, local rural non-profit organizations, community development corporations, or consortia of these groups. Grantees can use their grant funding to support a variety of housing and economic development activities including construction, preparation of plans, land acquisition, demolition, homeownership counseling, and financial assistance.

HUD awarded Rural Innovation Fund grants in three categories nationwide:

  • Comprehensive Grants - 7 Comprehensive grants nationwide, in which grantees have examined the social, housing and economic needs and resources of their target areas and made proposals that address these needs through activities that will have sustained benefit and resources after HUD assistance is used. The maximum grant amount was $2,000,000 for this category. The SBCP grant falls in this category.

  • Single Purpose Grants - 31 Single Purpose grants nationwide, for more targeted initiatives, which typically focus primarily on either housing or economic development. The New Caney grant falls in this category.

  • Economic Development and Entrepreneurship for Federally Recognized Tribes - 8 Indian Economic Development and Entrepreneurship grants nationwide, awarded from $5 million set aside for applications for federally recognized Indian tribes

Highlights of the Awards include:

  • 19 states are represented among the service areas, including Texas.

  • 27 awardees (58%) are tribes or tribal affiliates. Tribal organizations were competitive in all categories under the NOFA and were recommended to receive 53% of total funding.

  • 789 housing units are proposed for low income beneficiaries nationwide.

  • 655 total jobs will be created through activities assisted by the grants nationwide. Jobs include 187 construction jobs and 460 permanent jobs nationwide.

  • Grantees propose leveraging more than $18 million in other funds for their respective projects.


HUD's mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD is working to strengthen the housing market to bolster the economy and protect consumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental homes: utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life; build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination; and transform the way HUD does business. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet at and You can also follow HUD on Twitter at @HUDnews or on Facebook at


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