The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is making nearly $100 million in Recovery Act funding available to help eliminate dangerous lead-based paint, as well as other health and safety hazards, from low-income homes. The grants will help 53 local programs in 20 states and the District of Columbia.
“In making these grants available today, the Department is acknowledging the importance of healthy homes and protecting our children from dangerous lead hazards,” says HUD Deputy Secretary Ron Sims. “And not only will this program contribute to healthy, safe homes for all children and families, which is a top priority for HUD, but it will also support shovel-ready projects that are essential to getting Americans back to work and fixing the nation’s economic crisis quickly and efficiently.”
The recipients of these grants were qualified applicants in the '08 funding cycle but were not initially awarded grants because of the limited number of funds at the time. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, signed by President Obama in February, made this funding available. The Act allocates $13.6 billion for projects and programs administered by HUD, nearly 75 percent of which was allocated to state and local recipients a week after the law was enacted. The remaining 25 percent of funds will be awarded through a competitive grant process in the coming months. In the past several weeks, HUD has announced the availability of a number of competitive funding opportunities, including $1 billion to support state and local government via the Community Development Block Grant Program; $1 billion for substantial improvements to thousands of public housing units through Public Housing Capital Funds; and $252 million to improve housing and spur economic development for Indian tribes and Alaskan native communities.
“The funding made available through the Recovery Act is crucial to improving the nation’s economy and local economies across the country and creating jobs,” says HUD spokesperson Andrea Mead.