TDHCA pandemic funds help nearly 6 million people
TDHCA received or reallocated more than $4.6 billion beginning in 2020 to counter the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. After more than three years since the onset of the pandemic, TDHCA has expended or obligated approximately 85% of its federal pandemic-related funding, more than $3.9 billion, to assist Texas households and residents financially impacted by the crisis and subsequent economic declines. Through various programs created and launched during the pandemic, TDHCA served nearly 6 million Texans with rental and utility assistance, housing stability, mortgage and home-related expenses, eviction diversion, homelessness prevention, and other direct or indirect services and community initiatives.
Along with the multiple programs TDHCA already oversaw, the agency created or co-created and launched the use of Community Development Block Grant funds, the Texas Rent Relief Program, the Housing Stability Services Program, the Emergency Housing Voucher Program, the Texas Homeowners Assistance Fund, Texas Utility Help, and the Texas Eviction Diversion Program.
TDHCA’s Texas Rent Relief (TRR) was one of the first in the nation to begin administering emergency rent relief for the U.S. Treasury Department in 2021. By July 2021, TRR had outpaced all other states in distributing funding according to Treasury data and was receiving national attention for program administration (https://www.politico.com/news/2021/09/04/white-house-texas-renter-rescue-509546).
Notably, some of TDHCA’s pandemic-related programs reflect the following milestones*:
- Texas Rent Relief
- $2.2 billion expended
- 323,000 households served
- Texas Homeowners Assistance Fund
- $634 million expended
- 55,000 households served
- Texas Utility Help
- $140 million expended
- 62,000 households served
- Community Development Block Grants CARES
- $92.2 million expended
- 3.5 million people served
- Housing Stability Services
- $132.8 million expended
- 88,000 households served
TDHCA developed the Texas Eviction Diversion Program, the first statewide eviction diversion program in Texas, in collaboration with Texas Office of Court Administration, the Supreme Court of Texas, and the Office of the Governor. As a subset of the Texas Rent Relief program, the Texas Eviction Diversion Program provided $243 million in rental and utility assistance, stopped evictions, and made eviction court records confidential for more than 25,000 renter households across Texas.
TDHCA’s efforts extended beyond direct assistance to residents and families, as well. In 2023, TDHCA began dedicating HOME American Rescue Plan (HOME ARP) dollars for the development of rental housing, or for operating costs and capacity building for eligible nonprofit organizations working to combat and prevent homelessness. TDHCA has obligated funding for nearly 230 rental units thus far.
Funding for the Community Development Block Grant CARES Act included awards for TDHCA to assist rural and small metro communities to create, expand or enhance public facilities that provide medical care, social services, and/or emergency housing to prevent the transmission of future pandemics. The Community Resiliency Program has expended $4.3 million of the total $49 million, and is beginning to see community efforts like those in Burnet with the Hill Country Children’s Advocacy Center (HCCAC) groundbreaking. HCCAC is a $5 million awardee through TDHCA’s Community Resiliency Program.
TDHCA’s efforts stand as a testament to the determination of the agency and its partners to ensure Texas families had the needed resources to overcome significant financial obstacles during and after the pandemic. As 2023 draws to close, TDHCA is resolved to continue its work making a difference for low-income families and residents.
*Totals reflect amounts and numbers served as of November 2, 2023.