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November 9, 2001
HUD AWARDS NEARLY $200 MILLION TO FLORIDA
WASHINGTON - Housing and Urban Development Secretary Mel Martinez today announced communities across Florida will receive nearly $200 million in federal assistance to stimulate local economies, promote affordable housing and help the homeless and persons living with AIDS.
"These grants do so much good for so many people," Martinez said. "This money helps communities do the critical work of stimulating business development and job growth, providing affordable housing and helping our most vulnerable neighbors."
The funding announced today is part of HUD's four block grant programs and includes:
- $123.6 million in Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) to fund local economic development priorities benefiting low- and moderate-income residents;
- $42 million in HOME funds to promote affordable housing programs for low-income families;
- $3 million in Emergency Shelter Grants (ESG) to meet the urgent needs of the homeless;
- $25.5 million in HOPWA (Housing Opportunities for Persons With AIDS) grants to provide housing and related services to low-income people with HIV/AIDS and their families; and,
- $5.2 million in loan guarantees made under HUD's Section 108 Loan Guarantee Assistance Program
First awarded in 1974, CDBG funds enable state and local governments to target their own economic development priorities. Although the rehabilitation of affordable housing has traditionally been the largest single use of the grants, the program is also an increasingly important catalyst for economic development activities that expand job and business opportunities for lower income families and neighborhoods.
HOME (Home Investment Partnerships Program) is the largest federal block grant
to state and local governments designed exclusively to create affordable housing
for low-income households. Since 1992, more than a half million affordable housing
units have been acquired, constructed or rehabilitated and nearly 70,000 tenants
have received direct rental assistance. In addition, more than 200,000 new homebuyers
have received assistance to purchase their first homes through the HOME program.
Emergency Shelter Grants, part of HUD's award-winning Continuum of Care initiative, help communities meet the basic shelter needs of homeless individuals and families. The grants also provide transitional housing and a variety of support services designed to move the homeless away from a life on the street towards permanent housing.
HOPWA grants expand housing opportunities, provide rental assistance, and support services to individuals with HIV/AIDS and their families. In addition, the HOPWA program also helps many communities develop strategic AIDS housing plans and fill in gaps in local systems of care.
HUD's block grant programs are distributed by formula around the country based on criteria including population, income levels, poverty rates and age of housing stock. HOPWA grants are distributed based on the number of AIDS cases as reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
In addition to the formula grants announced today, Martinez also said that HUD will provide $5.2 million in loan guarantees to the City of Sebring. Sebring will receive $5.2 million to assist with the rehabilitation and infrastructure improvements, construction interest, debt service reserve, private sector financing costs and management of assisted activities of the Historic Harder Hall Hotel project.
The Economic Development Loan Guarantees save communities money by reducing the interest rate they are charged on loans from commercial lenders. The guarantees also make loans more readily available and often attract other sources of funding from local and state governments, non-profits and the private sector to complete financing for major job creation activities.
Note: View a list of all grants announced today. Some Florida communities that choose to receive their block grants at other times of the year are not included in today's announcement.