U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Joe DeFelice, announced the agency will allocate $20,197,778 in COVID-19 relief funding to help Virginians. The allocation is part of a third wave in CARES Act coronavirus relief funding totaling one billion dollars through its Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program. To date, HUD has provided over three billion dollars in CDBG funding nationwide to help communities acutely combat coronavirus and alleviate economic hardship.
“Coronavirus has impacted our communities and populations in unprecedented ways, and while some begin to see a decline in reported cases, others continue to fight this invisible enemy aggressively,” said HUD Secretary Ben Carson. “This funding will afford states the ability to respond to the unique circumstances they are facing – from reducing risk of transmission to regaining the sound footing of their economy. This is the third wave of funding the Department has provided to States, and we will continue to execute a detailed and swift response until the days of COVID-19 are behind us.”
“I commend Virginia Beach’s Housing Director Andy Friedman and Mayor Bobby Dyer for quickly launching the Eviction Prevention Assistance program to assist renters experiencing financial hardship due to COVID-19,” added DeFelice. “The City allocated two million in initial CARES Act funding to start up the program—making a tremendous impact in addressing the housing challenges facing residents as a result of the health emergency, to shelter homeless individuals and prevent people from experiencing homelessness. It’s that type of innovative thinking that will help all of us get through this challenging time.”
The allocation formula uses variables focusing on public health needs, risk of transmission of coronavirus, rate of coronavirus cases, and economic disruption. The formula uses data on low-income elderly and poor children to target to places with higher public health risk while also using recent unemployment insurance claims data to provide for states hardest hit, at the time of the allocation, by unemployment. All of the factors are adjusted so that places with higher than the national average in COVID-19 cases receive a slightly higher share of funding.
Grantees may select from more than 25 eligible CDBG activities to shape their local programs to meet their needs, including:
• A wide range of public services to prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus, such as providing food and health services for low-income elderly persons and children,
• Small business assistance or emergency housing payments for entities and families impacted by economic and housing market disruptions, or
Acquisition and rehabilitation of structures for health facilities, food banks, or public improvements needed to support community coronavirus response, preparation, or prevention. For example, grants may assist improvements to heating, ventilation, and air conditioning in a local grocery store to protect employees and shoppers, or alterations to neighborhood business district sidewalks and facades to enable curbside pick-up or social distancing.
Every U.S. State and Insular Area will receive a portion of these relief funds.
After President Trump signed the CARES Act into law, HUD acted immediately to allocate its first wave of funding – over three billion to assist communities and non-profits – to help protect the homeless and Americans with compromised immune systems, as well as assist Tribal communities in their COVID-19 response efforts. To date, all grant agreement amendments from the first round of funding have been completed by grantees and approved by HUD.
Shortly after the initial $3 billion tranche, HUD announced a second wave of funding to help low-income Americans living in Public Housing. For more information on HUD's response to the novel coronavirus pandemic and the actions the Department has taken, please visitHud.gov/coronavirus. Public Housing Authorities across the Nation have jumped into action to help assist their tenants and their communities during this unprecedented time. Read more about their stories featured in HUD's Neighbors Helping Neighbors campaign, here.
HUD's mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. The Department’s Mid-Atlantic region includes Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Washington, D.C. and West Virginia. The regional office is in Philadelphia. Follow Regional Administrator Joe DeFelice on Twitter.
More information about HUD and its programs is available at www.hud.gov and www.espanol.hud.gov. Connect with HUD on social media or sign up for news alerts via HUD's email list. Follow Secretary Carson on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.