Public housing authorities in Michigan received $8.1 million in CARES act funding to help families during the COVID-19 pandemic.
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson announced $472 million nationally in CARES Act funding to help low-income families, including $8.1 million to 61 PHAs throughout Michigan.
The 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.
“This funding will provide additional resources to public housing authorities to make sure people have a decent, safe and affordable place to call home,” Carson said. “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.”
Of the $8.1 million allocated to PHAs in Michigan, $87,929 went to the Battle Creek Housing Commission, $482,836 went to the Grand Rapids Housing Commission, $1,736 went to the Ionia Housing Commission, $74,396 went to the Kent County Housing Commission, $22,937 went to the Muskegon Housing Commission, $6,489 went to the Muskegon Heights Housing Commission and $5,734 went to the Rockford Housing Commission.
“Public housing authorities have a vital role to play as we continue our COVID‑19 recovery efforts,” said Joseph Galvan, HUD Midwest regional administrator. “We will continue working diligently to overcome this as expeditiously as possible.”
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 projects.
- Relocation of participating families to health units or other designated units for testing, hospitalization, 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 child care 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.).