The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Ben Carson announced $472 million in CARES Act funding to help low-income families during the coronavirus pandemic. This funding can be used by Public Housing Authorities to help families assisted by Housing Choice Vouchers (HCV) and Mainstream vouchers prevent, prepare for and respond to the coronavirus. The funding, made available by the CARES Act legislation President Trump signed into law on March 27, 2020, will be awarded to Public Housing Authorities across the Nation. See the local impact of the housing assistance.
“This funding will provide additional resources to public housing authorities to make sure people have a decent, safe and affordable place to call home,” said HUD Secretary Ben Carson. “HUD continues to work with our public housing authorities to protect American families from this invisible enemy, including vulnerable residents in the Housing Choice Voucher Program.”
“These new funds are important and will go a long way to help low-income residents secure and retain affordable housing during this unprecedented time,” said Hunter Kurtz, assistant secretary for Public and Indian Housing.
The Housing Choice Voucher Program (HCV) includes the Mainstream Program which provides tenant-based vouchers that serve low-income households.
The eligible coronavirus-related activities include, but are not limited to, the following:
– Procuring cleaning supplies and/or services to maintain safe and sanitary HCV units, including common areas of PHA-owned Project Based Voucher (PBV) projects.
– Relocation of participating families to health units or other designated units for testing, hospitalization or quarantine, or transportation to these locations to limit the exposure that could be caused by using mass transportation.
– Additional costs to supportive services vendors incurred due to coronavirus.
– Costs to retain or increase owner participation in the HCV Program, such as incentive or retention costs (e.g. the PHA offers owner an incentive payment to participate in recognition of added difficulties of making units available for HCV families to rent while stay-at-home orders or social distancing practices are in effect).
– Costs for providing childcare for the children of PHA staff that would not have otherwise been incurred (e.g. children are at home due to school closings, PHA staff are working outside of regular work schedules, etc.).