Houston County Courier - Local News
Stories Added - July 2008
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Local nonprofit helping area low income tenants secure decent housing
Houston County Courier - July 2008

Realizing that achieving self-sufficiency stabilizes both the individual and the community, the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs (TDHCA) has announced a major funding award to an East Texas nonprofit organization serving a 12-county region to help eligible individuals secure affordable rental housing while working toward financial independence.

TDHCA awarded $298,844 in rental assistance funds to the Burke Center, a nonprofit housing organization serving Angelina, Houston, Jasper, Nacogdoches, Newton, Polk, Sabine, San Augustine, San Jacinto, Shelby, Trinity, and Tyler counties.

The organization, headquartered in Lufkin, will use the award to help an estimated 32 households with their monthly rent payments.

"Finding a safe, affordable place to call home is a monthly challenge for too many Texans,” said TDHCA Executive Director Michael Gerber.

"Unfortunately, the challenge is even greater in rural parts of our state where there are simply fewer housing choices. These funds will not only make an immediate impact on the lives of these tenants, they have the potential to create the long-term benefits of self-reliance.”

The Burke Center will use the award to help subsidize rents and make security and utility deposits for eligible low income households, ensuring they can find decent, affordable rental housing.

The assistance is available for up to 24 months. In return, tenants must participate in a self-sufficiency program with the goal of achieving eventual financial independence.

This award was made through TDHCA’s HOME Investment Partnerships (HOME) Program, which is funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. HOME funds are designed to assist households at or below 80 percent of the area median family income (AMFI).

Eligible applicants include qualifying units of local government, public housing authorities, Community Housing Development Organizations and other nonprofit groups, and qualifying for-profit organizations.

The Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs is the state agency responsible for affordable housing, community and energy assistance programs, and colonia activities. The Department annually administers more than $400 million through for-profit, nonprofit, and local government partnerships to deliver local housing and community-based opportunities and assistance to Texans in need.




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