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[Austin RENT Assistance Update Virtual News Conference]

[00:00:11]

GOOD MORNING, EVERYONE.

AND WELCOME TO THE CITY OF BOSTON'S VIRTUAL PRESS CONFERENCE TO ANNOUNCE THE 2020 RELIEF OF EMERGENCY NEEDS FOR TENANTS ASSISTANT PROGRAM ALSO KNOWN AS RENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM.

MY NAME IS GEORGE ORTEGA, PUBLIC INFORMATION SPECIALIST WITH THE CITY OF AUSTIN'S HOUSING AND PLANNING DEPARTMENT.

AND I WILL BE YOUR MODERATOR.

WE'RE JOINED TODAY WITH SPEAKERS, ROSIE TRUELOVE DIRECTOR OF THE CITY OF AUSTIN'S HOUSING AND PLANNING DEPARTMENT AND MICHAEL GERBER, PRESIDENT AND CEO OF THE HOUSING AUTHORITY OF THE CITY OF AUSTIN.

IN ADDITION, WE HAVE AN EFFORT TD JACQUELINE POLICY PLANNING AND OUTREACH MANAGER FOR THE CITY OF AUSTIN AND B LOT OF SANCHEZ VICE-PRESIDENT OF AUSTIN PATHWAYS.

A SUBSIDIARY OF THAT HOUSING AUTHORITY TODAY'S POLL REPORTER IS SPREAD KUNG FU WITH CVS AUSTIN.

THIS PRESENTATION IS SIMULCASTS IN SPANISH, ON ATX AND THREE AND A CLOSED CAPTIONED ART SERVICES ARE PROVIDED.

WE'LL BEGIN WITH DIRECTOR.

TRUE LOVE.

WE'LL DISCUSS THE PREVIOUS PROGRAMS, PERFORMANCE, THE CONTINUED NEED FOR RENTAL ASSISTANCE IN AUSTIN.

AND THE STRENGTH OF THE CITY'S CONTINUED PARTNERSHIP WITH HAKA TO ADDRESS THIS NEED.

NEXT WILL BE MR. GERBER'S REMARKS FOLLOWED BY MS JACLYN'S AND MS. SANCHEZ WE'LL THEN TURN TO THE BOARD PORTER FOR THE Q AND A PORTION OF THE CONFERENCE.

I'D LIKE TO NOW HAND IT OFF TO ROSIE CHULA TO BEGIN ROSIE.

THANK YOU.

AND THANKS FOR JOINING US TODAY.

I'M ROSIE TRUELOVE DIRECTOR OF THE CITY OF AUSTIN'S HOUSING AND PLANNING DEPARTMENT, AND WE ARE THRILLED TO ONCE AGAIN, JOIN FORCES WITH THE HOUSING AUTHORITY OF THE CITY OF AUSTIN TO ANNOUNCE THE 2021 RELIEF OF EMERGENCY NEEDS FOR TENANTS PROGRAM.

THIS PROGRAM PROVIDES A TOTAL OF $25 MILLION FROM THE U S DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY TO SUPPORT AUSTIN'S LOW-INCOME RENTERS, STILL FEELING THE DEVASTATING IMPACTS OF COVID-19 TO SAY IT HAS BEEN A CHALLENGING YEAR WOULD BE AN UNDERSTATEMENT AUSTINITES ARE STILL REELING FROM SOCIAL INJUSTICES, AN UNPRECEDENTED WINTER STORM, AND A GLOBAL PANDEMIC.

OUR CITY IS MADE UP OF STRONG AND RESILIENT PEOPLE, AND WE WANT TO ENSURE THAT OUR MOST VULNERABLE COMMUNITIES GET HELP TO STAY HOUSED.

MANY ARE UNABLE TO PAY THEIR RENT AND ARE AT RISK OF BEING EVICTED FROM THEIR HOMES.

THE RENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM IS FOR LOW INCOME AUSTIN RENTERS WHO HAVE BEEN AFFECTED BY COVID-19 AND ARE UNABLE TO PAY THEIR RENT.

THE PROGRAM HAS BEEN ENHANCED TO ADDRESS EQUITY, TO PRIORITIZE VULNERABLE AND LOW-INCOME POPULATIONS AND CREATE STRONGER COORDINATION OF TENANT STABILIZATION SERVICES.

THE STREAMLINED APPLICATION MAKES IT EASIER TO APPLY THE RENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM THAT RAN THAT RAN FROM AUGUST, 2020 THROUGH DECEMBER, 2020 SERVED MORE THAN 4,000 HOUSEHOLDS WITH MORE THAN $12 MILLION IN FEDERAL CARES ACT FUNDS.

THE INTER LOCAL AGREEMENT WITH THE HOUSING AUTHORITY ALLOWED THE CITY TO MOVE SWIFTLY AND EFFECTIVELY DISPERSING MORE THAN 12 MILLION IN CARES FUNDING BY THE DECEMBER 31ST DEADLINE IN JANUARY OF 2021, WITH THE ADDITION OF 3.2 MILLION IN COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT BLOCK GRANT CORONAVIRUS RELIEF FUNDS AND GENERAL FUNDS STAFF CONTINUED THE PROGRAM THROUGH FEBRUARY, 2021, SERVING AN ADDITIONAL 500 HOUSEHOLDS OF THE HOUSEHOLDS SERVED MORE THAN 60% WERE CONSIDERED EXTREMELY LOW INCOME AT 30% MEDIAN FAMILY INCOME AND BELOW.

AND AMONG THOSE MOST SERVED WERE LATIN X POPULATIONS AT 38% OF THE TOTAL ASSISTED HOUSEHOLDS.

AND WE KNOW THAT POPULATION CONTINUES TO BE DISPROPORTIONATELY IMPACTED BY COVID-19.

OUR GOAL IS TO PROVIDE RENT ASSISTANCE, TO KEEP RENTERS IN THEIR HOMES WHERE THEY CAN BE SAFE, AMID THE ONGOING CRISIS.

AND I'M GLAD TO INTRODUCE THE NEW RENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM OPENED THIS MORNING, AND WE ENCOURAGE ELIGIBLE HOUSEHOLDS TO APPLY.

I'M PLEASED TO BE HERE TODAY BY OUR KEY PARTNER WHOSE COLLABORATION IS CRITICAL AND SUCCESSFULLY DELIVERING THE RENT PROGRAM TO OUR COMMUNITY.

MIKE GERBER WITH THE HOUSING AUTHORITY FOR THE CITY OF AUSTIN IS GOING TO BE SPEAKING NEXT.

AND MR. GERBER WILL PROVIDE MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THE BENEFITS OF THE PROGRAM AND OUR STRONG COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIPS THAT HAVE HELPED TO MAKE RENT A SUCCESS.

MIKE, THANKS, ROSY AND GOOD MORNING, EVERYBODY.

UH, TOO MANY FAMILIES IN AUSTIN ARE STRUGGLING TO PAY THEIR RENT BECAUSE OF THE JOB LOSS LOSS OF WORK HOURS OR ANOTHER IMPACT FROM THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC.

WE'RE TRULY HONORED TO BE ABLE TO, AGAIN, PARTNER WITH THE CITY OF AUSTIN TO CONTINUE TO DELIVER THIS MUCH NEEDED EMERGENCY RENTAL ASSISTANCE.

FOR MANY YEARS, THE HOUSING AUTHORITY OF THE CITY OF AUSTIN HAS WORKED TO PROVIDE HOUSING, STABILITY AND ASSISTANCE IN AUSTIN TODAY THROUGH OUR PARTNERSHIP

[00:05:01]

WITH THE CITY, WE'RE GLAD TO, AGAIN, HELP ASSIST FAMILIES IN NEED THROUGH THE RENT PROGRAM.

WE'RE GRATEFUL TO THE CITY AND TO PLAY A KEY ROLE IN IMPLEMENTING THIS PROGRAM FOR THOSE WHO NEED TO ACCESS CRITICAL SERVICES IN ORDER TO STAY SAFE AND TO BE ABLE TO STAY IN THEIR HOMES VITAL TO THIS PROGRAM, SUCCESS IS OUR ABILITY TO NOT ONLY PARTNER WITH THE CITY OF AUSTIN, BUT ALSO WORK THROUGH KEY RELATIONSHIPS WITH COMMUNITY-BASED ORGANIZATIONS WHO ARE SO CRITICAL TO THE PROGRAMS PAST SUCCESS.

WE'LL BE COUNTING ON THEM AGAIN FOR THIS NEXT ITERATION OF THE RET PROGRAM.

WE'RE GOING TO CONTINUE TO RELY ON OUR NONPROFIT PARTNERS TO HELP WITH ASSISTING RESIDENTS AND COMPLETING APPLICATIONS AND TO INFORM FAMILIES IN NEED OUR VALUED COMMUNITY PARTNERS HAVE THE REACH, THE TRUST AND THE ACCESS IN THE COMMUNITY THAT, THAT WE DESPERATELY NEED IN ORDER TO MAKE SURE THAT EVERY PERSON IN OUR CITY IS REACHED.

AND WE THANK THEM FOR THEIR HELP AS OUR FAMILIES WORK THROUGH THIS ONGOING CHALLENGE.

I WANT TO SHARE A FEW OF THE REALLY IMPORTANT PROGRAM BENEFITS OF THE RENT PROGRAM.

THEN MAKE THIS PROGRAM.

I THINK THE, THE FIRST CHOICE FOR RENTAL ASSISTANCE HERE IN OUR CITY, FIRST, THE RENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM THAT STARTING TODAY IS GOING TO BE ABLE TO PAY UP TO 15 MONTHS OF RENT INCURRED BETWEEN APRIL OF 2020 THROUGH DECEMBER 31ST OF 2021 FOR ELIGIBLE RENTER AUSTIN RENTERS.

THIS MEANS THAT THE PROGRAM CAN COVER CURRENT PAST AND FUTURE RENT AS WELL AS LATE AND OTHER FEES THAT ARE INCLUDED IN YOUR LEASE.

SUCH AS UTILITIES INCLUDED WITH RENT, INTERNET SERVICES, FEES FOR GARAGE, USE STORAGE, SERVICE, ANIMALS, AND PETS THAT MAY BE ON YOUR LEASE AS WELL.

WE CAN COVER A FULL RANGE OF COSTS THAT ARE AGAIN INCURRED BY YOU AS A RENT OR TO HELP YOU STAY IN YOUR HOME AND TO PAY AGAIN, UP TO 15 MONTHS OF, OF, OF RENT MULTIPLE MONTHS OF PAST DUE RENT CAN ALSO BE APPROVED AT ONCE.

AND FUTURE RENTS ARE SCREENED FOR ELIGIBILITY EVERY THREE MONTHS AND FUTURE IT'S GOING TO BE PROVIDED THREE MONTHS AT A TIME.

REN PAYMENTS ARE MADE DIRECTLY TO THE LANDLORD OR PROPERTY MANAGER OR THE PROPERTY OWNER WHO'S OWED THE RENT.

AND THAT'S, THESE ARE ALL IMPORTANT PIECES OF THIS THAT I THINK WILL MAKE THIS PROGRAM AGAIN, JUST ONE OF THE MOST EFFECTIVE, UH, IN THE COUNTRY AS THE EARLIER TWO ITERATIONS OF THIS PROGRAM HAVE BEEN THREE POINTS I WANT TO REALLY UNDERSCORE FIRST THE RENT PROGRAM REALLY IS YOUR BEST BET FOR QUICK HELP.

IF YOU LIVE IN THE CITY OF AUSTIN, SECOND, THE PROCESS IS GOING TO BE EASY AND FAST, AND THERE'S LOTS OF HELP TO GET EVERYONE WHO ASSIST PEOPLE WHO APPLY.

AND THIRDLY, YOU CAN RECEIVE AGAIN UP TO 15 MONTHS OF HELP.

SO WE HOPE EVERYONE WILL GO ONLINE OR CALL AND APPLY JUST AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.

LET ME TURN IT NOW OVER TO NEFFER T JACKMAN IS THE CITY OF AUSTIN'S POLICY PLANNING AND OUTREACH SPECIALIST MANAGER TO DISCUSS IMPORTANT PROGRAMMING ENHANCEMENTS AND PROGRAM PRIORITIES FOR THE RENT 3.0 PROGRAM NET FERTILITY.

THANK YOU, MIKE.

WE FORESEE FEEDBACK FROM THE COMMUNITY AND WITH THAT FEEDBACK, WE WERE ABLE TO ENHANCE THE 2021 RENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM TO INCLUDE A TARGETED FOCUS ON PRIORITY COMMUNITIES.

SIGNIFICANT POLICY CHANGES TO RENT 2021 INCLUDES SUSTAINED ASSISTANCE, OR BY HOUSEHOLDS MAY BE ELIGIBLE RECEIPT TO RECEIVE UP TO 15 MONTHS OF RENT ASSISTANCE, IMPROVE RESPONSE TIME.

FEDERAL GUIDELINES HAVE REDUCED WAITING TIME FOR LANDLORD RESPONSE FROM 21 TO 10 DAYS, WHICH WILL ALLOW US TO GET ASSISTANCE TO FAMILIES MORE QUICKLY.

LANDLORDS CAN ALSO REGISTER ON THE PROGRAMS ONLINE PORTAL IN ADVANCE OF NOTIFICATION FROM THE PROGRAM, WHICH CAN ALSO REDUCE DELAYS.

IF LANDLORDS ARE UNRESPONSIVE, PAYMENTS CAN BE MADE DIRECTLY TO THE RENTER.

THERE'S ALSO FLEXIBILITY IN DOCUMENTATION.

UM, ALLOW WITH THE PROGRAM.

FEDERAL GUIDANCE ALLOWS GREATER FLEXIBILITY IN THE ALLOWABLE FORMS OF REQUIRED DOCUMENTATION, AND THERE ARE ALSO GREATER OPTIONS FOR SELF-CERTIFICATION.

ALSO DOCUMENTS ARE NOT REQUIRED TO BE SUBMITTED AT THE TIME OF APPLICATION.

AND FINALLY, WITH COORDINATED ASSISTANCE, UH, FROM AUSTIN ENERGY, THE RENT PROGRAM WILL PROVIDE APPROVED APPLICATION INFORMATION TO AUSTIN ENERGY FOR AUSTIN ENERGY CUSTOMERS IN NEED OF UTILITY ASSISTANCE.

AUSTIN ENERGY WILL PROVIDE THE UTILITY ASSISTANCE AND ELIGIBLE APPLICANTS DO NOT HAVE TO APPLY FOR UTILITY ASSISTANCE SEPARATELY.

THE NEW PROGRAM DESIGN FOCUSES ON THE HIGHEST PRIORITY GROUPS AS OUTLINED BY THE US DEPARTMENT OF TREASURY WHILE ALSO INCLUDING LOCAL PRIORITIES.

OUR PRIORITY ONE IS RENTERS WHO QUALIFY FOR UNEMPLOYMENT FOR AT LEAST THE 90 CONSECUTIVE DAYS BEFORE APPLICATION AND HAVE ZERO OR EXTREMELY LOW INCOME ADD OR A LITTLE LESS

[00:10:01]

30% OF THE AREA MEDIUM INCOME PRIORITY.

TWO IS RENTERS WHO QUALIFY FOR UNEMPLOYMENT FOR AT LEAST THE 90 CONSECUTIVE DAYS BEFORE APPLICATION AND HAVE LOW INCOME BETWEEN 30% AND 50% OF THE AREA MEDIAN INCOME PRIORITY THREE IS SPRINTERS THAT MEET ONE OF THE FOLLOWING CRITERIA RENTERS WHO QUALIFY FOR UNEMPLOYMENT FOR AT LEAST THE 90 CONSECUTIVE DAYS BEFORE APPLICATION OR LOW INCOME RENTERS AT, OR LESS THAN 50% OF THE AREA AREA, MEDIAN INCOME OR RENTERS WHO HAVE EXPERIENCED HOMELESSNESS IN THE LAST THREE YEARS OR RENTERS WHO APPLY FOR RENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM BETWEEN AUGUST, 2020 AND DECEMBER, 2020, UH, AND DID NOT RECEIVE RENT HELP THIS HOWEVER DOES NOT INCLUDE IN ACTIVE APPLICATIONS AND APPLICATIONS THAT WERE DENIED.

AND THEN FOUR IS A CATEGORY PRIORITY FOR ALL ELIGIBLE HOUSEHOLDS, THE PRIORITY GROUP.

IT ENSURES THAT THOSE IN MOST NEED GET RID HELP FIRST.

AND WITH THAT, I'LL HAND IT OFF TO PLR WITH THE HOUSING AUTHORITY TO WALK US THROUGH THE ELIGIBILITY AND THE APPLICATION PROCESS.

UH, YOU ARE ADMITTED.

WELL, THANK YOU NEFERTITI.

AS WE MENTIONED BEFORE, THE PROGRAM IS FASTER AND EASIER TO APPLY ON THE RENT WEBSITE.

YOU CAN SEE WHO'S ELIGIBLE FOR ASSISTANCE AND WHAT RUNNERS CAN EXPECT WHEN APPLYING, UH, APPLICANTS WILL BE RANDOMLY SELECTED EVERY FRIDAY AT NOON.

AND WE'LL BE CONSIDERING THE HIGHEST PRIORITY GROUPS FIRST.

UM, IF YOUR APPLICATION IS SELECTED, THE PROGRAM STAFF WILL REQUEST ADDITIONAL INFORMATION AT THAT TIME FROM BOTH THE RENTER AND THE LANDLORD, THE ELIGIBILITY REVIEW WILL BEGIN ONCE APPLICATIONS.

UH, ONCE THE APPLICANT'S INFORMATION HAS BEEN SUBMITTED AND THE ELIGIBILITY DECISION WILL BE PROVIDED TO BOTH THE RENTER AND THE LANDLORD, UM, AND ALL PAYMENTS WILL BE MADE DIRECTLY TO THE LANDLORD BY AN ACH ELECTRONIC TRANSFER.

WE'RE HAPPY TO ANNOUNCE THAT APPLICANTS CAN CHECK THE STATUS OF AN APPLICATION AT ANY TIME BY LOGGING INTO THE APPLICATION PORTAL, BOTH THE RENTER AND THE LANDLORD CAN CHECK THOSE STATUS OF THEIR, OF THEIR, UH, WRENCH SCREWS AND THE WRENCH OVER THEIR APPLICATION APPLICATIONS CAN BE SUBMITTED 24 HOURS A DAY, SEVEN DAYS A WEEK FROM A SMARTPHONE MOBILE PHONE, UH, A COMPUTER, UH, ANYTHING OF THAT INTERNET ACCESS UNTIL THE PROGRAM FUNDS ARE SPENT, THOSE WHO NEED ASSISTANCE COMPLETING AN APPLICATION OR A LANGUAGE TRANSLATION OR SPECIFIC COMMUNICATION FORMAT CAN CALL FIVE (122) 488-1397 FROM 8:00 AM TO 6:00 PM CENTRAL STANDARD TIME, MONDAY THROUGH FRIDAY AND INDIVIDUALS NEEDING, UM, HEARING OR SPEECH ACCESSIBILITY, UM, CAN, UM, I'LL HAVE TO GET BACK TO YOU ON THAT ONE.

UM, THERE'S A NEW WAY THAT YOU CAN ACCESS A SPEECH ACCESSIBILITY.

UH, LET'S TALK ABOUT ELIGIBILITY.

SO ELIGIBILITY FOR THIS VERSION OF THE RENT PROGRAM REMAINS MOSTLY THE SAME, BUT WITH MANY IMPROVEMENTS, UM, JUST LIKE BEFORE, UH, RESIDENTS ARE ELIGIBLE, IF THEY LIVE INSIDE THE AUSTIN FULL PURPOSE JURISDICTIONS CITY LIMITS, AND THEY EARN 80% OR LESS OF THE AVERAGE MEDIAN INCOME, IF AN APPLICANT IS UNSURE, THEY CAN FOLLOW A LINK ON THE WEBSITE TO, TO VERIFY THE FALL WITHIN THOSE LIMITS.

AND AS BEFORE RENTERS MUST BE ABLE TO SHOW THAT THEY ARE ON A LEASE OR HAVE A RENTAL AGREEMENT, AND THAT THEY HAVE BEEN FINANCIALLY IMPACTED BY COVID-19.

HOWEVER, AT THIS TIME, APPLICANTS ARE NOT REQUIRED TO UPLOAD ANY DOCUMENTS IN ORDER TO SUBMIT THEIR APPLICATIONS.

ONCE THEY'RE SELECTED, IF THEIR APPLICATION IS SELECTED THEM THAT TIME LAST, BOTH THE LANDLORD AND THE RENTER FOR SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS, TO BE ABLE TO VERIFY THEIR ELIGIBILITY, I CAN INCLUDE PAY STEPS, ASKED YOU RENT NOTICES AND EMPLOYMENT OR TERMINATION NOTICES AND OTHER DOCUMENTS.

YOU CAN FIND A LIST OF, UH, EXAMPLES OF WHAT TYPE OF DOCUMENTS CAN CAN BE SUBMITTED TO FILL THIS REQUIREMENT AND RESONANCE FOR DID THEIR PROGRAM.

LAST YEAR ARE STILL ELIGIBLE FOR THE PROGRAM AND CAN RECEIVE HELP WITH GRANTS THAT ARE STILL UNPAID ALL THE WAY FROM APRIL LAST YEAR THROUGH DECEMBER, THIS YEAR AND REYNOLDS WHO APPLIED FOR THE PROGRAM LAST YEAR AND DID NOT RECEIVE ASSISTANCE OR ENCOURAGED TO REAPPLY,

[00:15:01]

YOU DON'T NEED TO TEST YOUR SECURITY NUMBER OR LEGAL STATUS TO APPLY OR TO BE ELIGIBLE.

IT'S NOT NECESSARY TO BE A US CITIZEN OR A LEGAL RESIDENT TO BE ELIGIBLE, AND YOU'RE NOT REQUIRED TO PROVIDE YOUR IMMIGRATION STATUS.

THE APPLICATION IS AVAILABLE IN MULTIPLE LANGUAGES IN ENGLISH AND ANISH, ARABIC, KOREAN, CHINESE BURMESE AND VIETNAMESE, JUST LIKE DIRECTOR TRILLA STATED STARTING TODAY, ELIGIBLE RIDERS MAY CLIENT ONLINE IN THE PORTAL, ACCESSIBLE THROUGH THE WEBSITE, AUSTIN, TEXAS.GOV BACKSLASH RENT.

THIS WEB PAGE CONTAINS A LINK DIRECTLY TO THE ONLINE RENT APPLICATION PORTAL AND HAS USEFUL INFORMATION IN BOTH ENGLISH AND SPANISH AND APPLICATIONS WILL REMAIN OPEN THROUGH DECEMBER, 2021, OR UNTIL THE FUNDS ARE DEPLETED.

WE'RE SO PLEASED TO BE ABLE TO OFFER THIS IMPROVED ELEMENTS TO THE MUCH NEEDED PROGRAM FOR OUR COMMUNITY.

THANK YOU, DOROTHY ANCHORS FOR THAT INFORMATION.

I'LL NOW TURN IT OVER TO OUR BOARD REPORTER TO BEGIN THE QUESTION AND ANSWER PORTION OF THE NEWS CONFERENCE.

CAN YOU HEAR ME? WE CAN HEAR YOU FRED.

OKAY.

EXCELLENT.

ALL RIGHT.

THE FIRST QUESTION COMES FROM SPECTRUM NEWS.

UM, REPORTER JAMIL, DONNA ASKS WILL, THESE FUNDS WILL BE AVAILABLE TO RENTERS AND TENANTS WHO ARE IN NEED OF TEMPORARY HOUSING BECAUSE OF THE SEVERE STORM DAMAGE THAT WAS LEFT.

UH, THEY'VE LEFT THEIR APARTMENTS UNLIVABLE.

THANK YOU.

UH, I'LL TAKE THAT QUESTION.

UM, RIGHT NOW THE, THE PRIMARY CONSIDERATION FOR UTILIZATION OF THIS PARTICULAR PROGRAM IS AN IMPACT BY COVID-19.

SO IF YOU ARE, UH, SOMEONE WHO HAS AN IMPACT OF COVID-19 AND YOU ARE FINDING THAT YOU'RE HAVING TO, THAT YOU'RE HAVING TROUBLE PAYING FOR YOUR RENTAL, UH, RELATED TO THE STORM, THEN, THEN THAT WOULD BE AN ELIGIBLE, UM, THAT WOULD BE AN ELIGIBLE USE OF THIS PROGRAM.

YOU WOULD JUST NEED TO APPLY AND, AND HAVE ALL THE APPROPRIATE DOCUMENTATION.

UM, IF YOU ARE NOT IMPACTED BY COVID-19, UH, BUT YOU ARE STILL HAVING IMPACTS FROM WINTER STORM URI.

I ENCOURAGE YOU TO GO TO, UM, AUSTIN, TEXAS.GOV/ATX REPAIRS.

AND, UH, THERE'S A, A WEALTH OF INFORMATION THERE ABOUT DIFFERENT HOME REPAIR PROGRAMS THAT WE HAVE THROUGH THE HOUSING AND PLANNING DEPARTMENT AND OTHER RESOURCES THAT ARE OTHER THAT ARE AVAILABLE.

THAT'S, UH, AUSTIN, TEXAS DOT SLASH 80 X REPAIRS.

THEY THANK YOU.

UH, THE NEXT QUESTION COMES FROM ME AND I WAS READING THAT THE 2020 RENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS SERVE MORE THAN 4,800 FAMILIES.

HOW MANY FAMILIES APPLIED FOR THE ASSISTANCE OR DO YOU KNOW THOSE NUMBERS OFF THE CERTAINLY AVAILABLE? IT WAS ABOUT 9,600 APPLICATIONS THAT WERE SUBMITTED FOR, FOR, UM, LAST YEAR.

ALL RIGHT.

SO NEXT QUESTION COMES FROM LOUIS ACOSTA FROM ODBC ON AUSTIN.

UH, LEWIS ASKS ARE UNDOCUMENTED INDIVIDUALS ELIGIBLE FOR THIS ASSISTANCE.

IF SO, WHAT DO THEY NEED TO APPLY? DO YOU WANT TO TAKE THAT QUESTION? I'M SORRY.

UM, YEAH, SURE.

SO, UM, EVERYBODY SUBMITS THE SAME INFORMATION.

UM, IF SOMEONE DOES NOT HAVE A SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER, THEY CAN ADD AN ITIN OR THEY CAN ADD THEIR FORMER, UM, REGISTRATION NUMBERS, OR THEY CAN LEAVE THAT QUESTION BLANK, BUT, UH, EVERYBODY WILL SUBMIT THE SAME INFORMATION.

THANK YOU.

UH, NEXT QUESTION IS FROM AUDREY MCGLINCHY OF KUT RADIO, SHE SAYS LOW-INCOME RENTERS WHO ARE APPLYING FOR HELP TO DO RENT TWO POINTS BELOW COMPLAINED OF BURDENSOME DOCUMENT REQUIREMENTS AND A LACK OF, OR DELAY IN COMMUNICATION FROM THE CITY AND HOUSING AUTHORITY THAT CHANGES THE MAJOR, FIX THESE PROBLEMS. IF SO, WHAT CHANGES HAVE BEEN MADE IF I COULD JUMP IN ON AND RESPOND TO, TO PART OF THAT, AND THEN I'LL MAYBE ASK OTHERS TO JOIN IN.

SO, SO FOR THIS ACTUALLY GETS TO THE QUESTION THAT YOU ASKED US A FEW MINUTES AGO,

[00:20:01]

UM, ABOUT HOW MANY FOLKS APPLY, BUT THEN HOW MANY FOLKS REALLY GOT ACROSS THE FINISH LINE.

AND, AND WHAT WE FOUND WITH THE EARLIER ITERATIONS OF THE PROGRAM WERE THAT WE WERE TRYING TO GET AS MUCH INFORMATION AS WE COULD UP FRONT AND, AND THAT DIDN'T SERVE, UM, THAT, THAT, THAT, THAT, THAT PROBABLY WASN'T THE MOST EFFECTIVE WAY TO, TO GO AND SELECT PEOPLE, UH, FOR THE PROGRAM.

THERE, THERE'S A MORE STRAIGHTFORWARD WAY, WHICH IS WHAT WE'RE TRYING TO INCORPORATE INTO THIS PROGRAM, WHICH IS TO MAKE IT AS LEAST BURDENSOME TO FOLKS UNTIL WE ACTUALLY NEED THE DOCUMENTATION THAT'S REQUIRED BY THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT.

THE FACT IS IT'S A, IT'S A FEDERAL SOURCE OF FUNDING.

UM, AND, AND IT COMES WITH, IT COMES WITH SOME STRINGS AND, AND IT COMES WITH SOME DOCUMENTATION REQUIREMENTS, BUT UNTIL WE KNOW THAT THE FAMILY HAS ACTUALLY SELECTED FOR HELP, THERE'S NO REASON TO GO AND IMPOSE THAT KIND OF A BURDEN ON, ON, ON ANYONE.

UM, THE, THE OTHER DIFFERENCE THAT'S GOING TO HAPPEN IN THIS ITERATION OF THE PROGRAM IS IT'S JUST GOING TO BE AN AWFUL LOT OF ADDITIONAL ASSISTANCE TO HELP FAMILIES GET ACROSS THE FINISH LINE.

ONE THING BECAUSE OF THE PANDEMIC IS THAT WE HAVEN'T BEEN ABLE TO DO THE FACE-TO-FACE WORK IT'S BEEN, IT'S BEEN, UM, YOU KNOW, THAT WE WOULD NORMALLY BE ABLE TO DO IT'S INSTEAD BEEN, UH, MOSTLY BY I FOLLOWING BY CONFERENCE CALL, UH, OR BY, YOU KNOW, BY OTHER MEANS OF, OF ASSISTANCE.

NOW WE'RE ACTUALLY ABLE, AND ACTUALLY THE HOUSING AUTHORITY WILL ESTABLISH STARTING NEXT MONDAY, A A, A WALK-IN CENTER, UH, FOR FOLKS WHO WILL BE ABLE TO, WITH THE SCHEDULED APPOINTMENT, BE ABLE TO COME IN, UH, AND, AND, AND BE ASSISTED IN GETTING ALL THE DOCUMENTATION THAT'S NECESSARY, UH, FILED TO BE ABLE TO, UH, TO BE ABLE TO COMPLETE THE PROCESS AND TO, AND TO BE FULLY QUALIFIED IF THEY'RE ABLE TO BE, UH, FOR THE, FOR THE PROGRAM.

SO WE'VE REALLY HEARD A LOT FROM THE NONPROFIT, FROM OUR NONPROFIT PARTNERS AND FROM THE COMMUNITY ABOUT HOW TO MAKE THIS PROGRAM MORE STRAIGHTFORWARD, MORE, MORE, MORE SIMPLE, MORE SIMPLIFIED.

UM, AND THAT'S WHAT WE, I THINK HAVE, HAVE REALLY, REALLY INCORPORATED AGAIN, UNDERSTANDING THAT IT COMES WITH A LOT OF FEDERAL STRINGS.

AND THAT'S JUST SORT OF THE NATURE OF, OF, OF, OF THESE PROGRAMS, THAT THERE IS SOME DOCUMENTATION THAT'S, UH, THAT'S JUST, THAT'S JUST A PIECE OF IT PULL OR ANYTHING YOU'D WANT TO TOUCH ON IN, IN OUR EFFORTS TO SIMPLIFY.

SURE.

UM, SO, UH, MIKE TALKED ABOUT THE ONE THAT WAS, UH, REALLY IMPORTANT THAT YOU NO LONGER HAVE TO SUBMIT DOCUMENTS IN ORDER TO APPLY.

UM, THERE'S ALSO NOW A CATEGORICAL ELIGIBILITY DOCUMENTS THAT WE CAN ACCEPT THAT MAKES, UM, PROVING THE, THE AMOUNT OF THEIR INCOME, UM, MUCH EASIER.

UM, THERE'LL BE, UM, WE HAVE, UH, A MUCH SHORTER AMOUNT OF TIME THAT WE HAVE TO WAIT BEFORE WE CAN GO AHEAD AND PAY THE RENT YOU'RE INSTEAD OF THE LANDLORD, IF THE LANDLORD IS TAKING TOO LONG TO RESPOND OR DECIDES NOT TO PARTICIPATE, WE CAN DIRECTLY PAY THE RENTER WHO WOULD THEN PAY THEIR LANDLORD.

UM, THERE ARE THINGS LIKE, UM, NEW SOUTH CERTIFICATION FORMS THAT MAKE IT MUCH EASIER FOR SOMEBODY TO, UM, DOCUMENT THEIR INCOME OR, UM, ADDITIONAL EXPENSES THAT THEY'VE HAD DUE TO COVID.

SO THEY, THE ENTIRE PROCESS HAS BEEN STREAMLINED THAT THE APPLICATION IS A TAD BIT LONGER BECAUSE IT REDUCES THE NUMBER OF DOCUMENTS THAT, THAT WILL BE REQUIRED, UH, IN THE BACKEND.

ALRIGHT, THANK YOU.

UH, NEXT QUESTION FROM KEVIN, EXCUSE ME.

HEY, FOR YOUR MIKE SOUNDS A LITTLE MUFFLED.

UM, DO YOU THINK WE CAN, WE CAN MAYBE CORRECT THAT BEFORE WE JUMP INTO THE NEXT, THE NEXT QUESTION.

WELL, I CAN'T HEAR MY OWN MICROPHONE SOUND ANY BETTER IF I GET CLOSE TO IT.

NO, NO.

IT'S ABOUT THE SAME.

SORRY WE JUST HAVE, WE HAVE SOME, UH, SOME SPANISH AND JUST TO KIND OF HELP THEM WITH THE INTERPRETATION.

OKAY.

UM, UH, I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO.

WE'VE GOT THIS ONE, THE WEBCAM HERE.

GOTCHA.

THAT'S ALSO THE MICROPHONE.

OKAY.

NO WORRIES.

OKAY.

I WISH I WISH I COULD DO SOMETHING, BUT, UH, I DON'T HAVE ANYTHING HANDY HERE.

APPRECIATE IT.

NO WORRIES.

WE'LL JUST PROCEED.

OKAY.

SORRY, WHAT WE CAN DO, HOPEFULLY IS, UM, REPEAT THE QUESTION BEFORE WE ANSWER IT.

WE'LL, WE'LL TRY TO HELP OUR INTERPRETERS OUT ON THAT.

OKAY.

OKAY.

THANK YOU, MR. KING.

SURE.

THAT'S A GOOD SUGGESTION.

OKAY.

UH, THE NEXT QUESTION COMES FROM HEAVEN.

CARPET KX AM.

HE SAYS IT'S ALMOST A YEAR SINCE LOCAL EVICTION PROTECTIONS WERE IMPLEMENTED.

TWO HOUSING OFFICIALS STILL ANTICIPATE A WAVE OF EVICTIONS WHEN PROTECTIONS ARE LIFTED.

AND WHAT IS THE PLAN TO ADDRESS THE CHALLENGE AT THAT TIME? OKAY, ABSOLUTELY.

SO THE QUESTION IS, UM, THERE IT'S BEEN ALMOST A YEAR SINCE THE

[00:25:01]

EVICTION PROTECTIONS OUR MORATORIUM HAS BEEN PUT IN PLACE.

AND WHAT ARE THE PLANS, UH, THAT HAVE BEEN PUT IN PLACE TO ADDRESS THE ANTICIPATED WAVE OF EVICTIONS? UM, THE CITY OF AUSTIN HAS SHOWN THAT DEMONSTRATED GREAT LEADERSHIP AND DOING WHAT THEY CAN TO KEEP FAMILIES STABLE, HOUSED IN A SAFE DURING THIS HEALTH PANDEMIC.

AND WE HAVE BEEN WORKING TO, IN ADDITION TO THE EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE PROGRAM, WE HAVE BEEN WORKING WITH A NUMBER OF COMMUNITY PARTNERS TO PUT TENANTS STABILIZATION PROGRAMS IN PLACE.

UH, SOME OF THOSE PROGRAMS, MANY OF THOSE PROGRAMS ARE, ARE ACTUALLY TAKING PLACE IN OPENING UP.

AND NOW, EVEN THOUGH THE EVICTION MORATORIUM WILL EVENTUALLY, UM, WELL IN ABOUT MAY 1ST, THAT'S WHAT WE'RE LOOKING AT RIGHT NOW.

SO WE HAVE RECEIVED FUNDING FROM TD CA TO SUPPORT, UH, TENANTS WHO ARE FACING EVICTION, AND THOSE WILL BE REFERRALS THROUGH THE, THE EVICTION COURTS.

SO THAT'S NUMBER ONE.

AND THEN ALSO WE HAVE, UM, EVICTION, UM, REPRESENTATION THROUGH A CONTRACT WITH TEXAS REAL BRANDY LEGAL AID, UH, WHICH WE'RE FINALLY GLAD TO HAVE THAT IN PLACE.

AND THEN ALSO WE HAVE A CONTRACT WITH AUSTIN TENANT'S COUNCIL TO PROVIDE ADDITIONAL SUPPORT FOR TENANTS FACING, UH, ANY TYPE OF CHALLENGES, UH, WITH THEIR LANDLORD.

SO THEY'RE HANDLING MEDIATION SERVICES AS WELL AS A CONTRACT WITH ELWIN.

UM, SOME ARCTIC SOMATA TUNNEL HELPING WITH A NEW CONTRACT WE'RE CALLING I BELONG IN AUSTIN.

SO THAT WILL ALSO PROVIDE EVICTION SUPPORT AND REPRESENTATION FOR MOVING AND STORAGE AS WELL AS NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENTS.

SO, UH, THE CITY OF AUSTIN IS DUANE A LOT.

WE DO NOT KNOW WHAT, UH, THINGS WILL LOOK LIKE AFTER THE EVICTION PROTECTIONS.

UM, OUR MOVE, WHAT WE CERTAINLY HOPE THAT WITH THE ADDITION OF THE RENT PROGRAMS, MANY FAMILIES WILL RECEIVE, UM, RENT HELP.

AND AGAIN, AS MANY PEOPLE HAVE SHARED, UH, WE WILL RECEIVE, UH, PARTICIPANTS ARE ELIGIBLE TO RECEIVE UP TO 15 MONTHS OF RENT ASSISTANCE.

SO WE, WE HOPE THAT THAT WILL BE ONE OF THE FIRST STEPS TO SUPPORT MANY FAMILIES NOW FOR TV.

COULD I ARE AFRAID IF I COULD JUST WEIGH IN ON THAT AS WELL? I, I, I WOULD OFFER THAT WE BELIEVE AT THE HOUSING AUTHORITY AND CITY OF AUSTIN, THAT, THAT, THAT, THAT THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE WHO ARE AT RISK OF EVICTION, OUR COMMUNITY, FROM WHAT WE'RE SEEING FROM THE 25,000 PEOPLE THAT WE SERVE EVERY NIGHT IS THAT THE RISK IS, IS REAL.

IT'S VERY PRESENT.

AND, AND THERE ARE MANY PEOPLE IN OUR COMMUNITY WHO ARE, ARE FRIGHTENED.

IT MAY NOT BE AS AS MANY PEOPLE AS, UM, AS, AS, UM, AS, AS, AS WE HOPE.

UM, BUT WE THINK THAT IT IS CERTAINLY MORE THAN, THAN, THAN, THAN WE WE'VE, WE'VE, IT'S GOING TO, WE THINK IT'S GOING TO BE MORE THAN, THAN, THAN, THAN WE KNOW YET.

AND SO, UM, THIS PROGRAM, THE RENT PROGRAM IS REALLY AN IMPORTANT TOOL AND WE ENCOURAGE EVERYBODY WHO HAS BEEN IMPACTED BY THE PANDEMIC.

WHO'S FACED A JOB LOSS REDUCTION IN HOURS.

WHO'S, UH, YOU KNOW, WHO WORKS, UH, YOU KNOW, IN OUR ARTS COMMUNITY, UM, UH, YOU KNOW, WHO HAS HAD AN IMPACT, UH, THIS PROGRAM HAS BEEN REALLY STREAMLINED AND OPENED UP IN WAYS TO REALLY MAKE SURE THAT WE GET EVERYBODY WHO COULD POTENTIALLY BE IMPACTED, UH, BECAUSE OF COVID.

UM, AND, AND, AND ENSURE THAT, THAT FOR A PERIOD OF TIME, AT LEAST THAT WE CAN STABILIZE THEM IN, IN, IN, IN SAFE HOUSING.

CAUSE WE KNOW THAT, UM, THAT THAT'S JUST THE MOST IMPORTANT PART OF, UH, REALLY RIDING THROUGH THIS, THIS VERY, VERY UNCERTAIN PERIOD.

YOU KNOW, OUR ECONOMY IS MORE ROBUST THAN IN OTHER PARTS OF THE COUNTRY, BUT IT'S NOT THAT ROBUST TO BE COMPLETELY IMMUNE FROM THE F THE FACTS, UM, OF, OF, OF, OF COVID THE ECONOMIC IMPACTS OF, OF COVID.

THERE'S A LOT OF PEOPLE IN OUR CITY ARE HURTING AND, UM, YOU KNOW, WE'RE, WE'RE SO GRATEFUL THAT WE HAVE THESE RESOURCES TO BRING TO BEAR, BUT I PERSONALLY BELIEVE, AND I THINK OTHERS BELIEVE THAT, UH, MORE RESOURCES ARE GOING TO NEED TO BE BROUGHT TO BEAR AS WELL TO ADDRESS THE NEEDS AFFECTING, UH, OUR HOMELESS NEIGHBORS, OTHERS WHO ARE VULNERABLE, OUR SENIORS, PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES.

UM, AND, AND SO MANY OTHERS WHO, UH, YOU KNOW, HAVE BEEN, HAVE BEEN HIT DISPROPORTIONATELY HARD, UH, AND IN, IN A VARIETY OF WAYS THAT WE HAVEN'T EVEN REALLY FULLY COME TO UNDERSTAND.

ALL RIGHT, THANK YOU.

UH, NEXT QUESTION IS FROM, UH, KEVIN CLARK FROM KX, AND, UH, HE SAYS, I'VE NOTICED SINGLE MEMBER HOUSEHOLDS HAVE RECEIVED THE MOST

[00:30:01]

RENT ASSISTANCE COMPARED WITH FAMILIES OR LARGER HOUSEHOLDS.

ARE THERE ANY BARRIERS SPECIFIC TO FAMILIES WOULD CHILL BY, UH, AND RECEIVE ASSISTANCE? I CAN TAKE THAT ONE.

UM, WE, WE DID SEE THAT BECAUSE THE APPLICATION REQUIRED DOCUMENTATION AT THE FOREFRONT WHEN YOU SUBMITTED, UM, THE APPLICATION THAT CAUSED A BIT OF A BARRIER FOR PEOPLE THAT HAD A LOT OF DOCUMENTS, AND USUALLY IT'D BE MORE FAMILY, YOU'D PROBABLY HAVE MORE DOCUMENTS TO CEMENT, AND THAT'S WHY WE STREAMLINE THE APPLICATION.

AND WE THINK THAT'S GOING TO MAKE A BIG DIFFERENCE FOR FAMILIES WITH CHILDREN.

THE OTHER THING THAT WE'RE DOING IS WE'RE MAKING SURE THAT WE'RE, UH, ADVERTISING TO IN GROUPS THAT SERVE, UH, LARGE FAMILIES, WHETHER THOSE ARE MARKETS WE'RE WORKING DIRECTLY WITH AUSTIN INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT, UH, WITH A LOT OF THEIR PARENT SUPPORT SPECIALISTS, TO BE ABLE TO DISSEMINATE THE INFORMATION TO FAMILIES WITH CHILDREN, AND ALSO TO ASSIST THEM, UH, WHETHER THAT'S TELEPHONICALLY OR IN PERSON WITH THE APPLICATION AND WITH UPLOADING DOCUMENTS THAT ARE REQUIRED.

SO WE, WE FEEL THAT, UM, THAT WE'VE, WE'VE, UH, IDENTIFIED SOME BARRIERS AND HAVE, UH, FOUND SOLUTIONS TO THOSE.

AND I LIKE TO ALSO ADD THAT, UM, WE DID HAVE A SIGNIFICANT NUMBER OF SINGLE HEADED HOUSEHOLDS ABOUT 2100, BUT THE VAST MAJORITY OF PEOPLE IN HOUSEHOLDS THAT RECEIVED ASSISTANCE WERE, UM, FAMILIES OF MULTIPLE, UH, PERSONS.

AND THAT WAS OVER 2,600 PEOPLE, UH, THAT WERE SERVICED, UH, WITH MORE THAN ONE MEMBER IN THE HOUSEHOLD.

ALL RIGHT.

AND I, UH, TRIED TO FIX MY AUDIO PROBLEM.

I SKIPPED OVER A QUESTION HERE FROM AUDREY MCGLINCHY OF KUT RADIO.

SHE ASKS HOW MANY HOUSEHOLDS DOES THE CITY ANTICIPATE WE'LL GET, WENT TO HELP THROUGH REP 3.0 AS SHE CALLS IT, OUR TENANTS WHO RECEIVE RENTAL ASSISTANCE FROM THE CITY, UH, LAST YEAR ELIGIBLE.

AND IF THE LAMBO IS UNRESPONSIVE, JACQUELINE SAID, THE CITY CAN PAY THE RENTER DIRECTLY.

HOW WILL THE PAYMENT BE MADE? AND WHAT IF A RENTER DOES NOT HAVE A BANK ACCOUNT? UH, THERE'S A NUMBER OF PARTS I'LL, I'LL TACKLE ONE AT A TIME, AND THEN OTHERS MIGHT, UH, JUMP IN AS WELL.

UH, THE FIRST QUESTION IS HOW MANY FAMILIES OR HOUSEHOLDS DO WE ANTICIPATE? DO WE ANTICIPATE SERVING? UM, WE ANTICIPATE SERVING APPROXIMATELY I WILL SAY PAIN.

UH, THE NUMBER OF RENTS.

WELL, WE HAVE ANTICIPATED PAY, UH, ABOUT 22,000 MONTHS OF BRIT, HOW MANY FAMILIES THAT'S GOING TO VARY.

AND SO ONCE WE GET INTO THE PROGRAM, WE WILL KNOW.

AND SO WE DON'T HAVE THOSE SPECIFIC DETAILS, BUT WE LOOK AT HOW MANY, UM, KEEPING IN MIND THAT WE CAN GIVE UP TO, UH, 15 MONTHS OF BACK RENT.

SO OUR BACK AND OR FOR RENT A COMBINATION THEREOF.

SO, UH, THAT'S WHAT WE'RE LOOKING AT IN TERMS OF THE NUMBER OF MONTHS OF RENT ASSISTANCE.

THE OTHER QUESTION WAS THERE WERE THREE QUESTIONS, MR. CANTU, CAN YOU REPEAT THE SECOND PART OF THE QUESTION? UM, HOUSEHOLDS.

YEAH.

CAN, HOW DOES, HOW WILL THE CITY BE ABLE TO PAY THE RENTER DIRECTLY? UH, AND WHAT IF THE RENTER DOES NOT HAVE A BANK ACCOUNT? OKAY.

I'LL LET THE LARK TAKE THE LAST ONE.

UM, THERE'S A MIDDLE ONE IN THERE, AND THAT ONE WAS SPECIFIC TO OUR HOUSEHOLDS ELIGIBLE TO PARTICIPATE IN THIS PROGRAM IF THEY PARTICIPATED IN RENT 2.0, UH, YES, THEY ARE.

UH, HOUSEHOLDS ARE ELIGIBLE TO PARTICIPATE, UH, EVEN IF THEY RECEIVED ASSISTANCE AND RENT 2.0, THIS IS A TOTALLY NEW PROGRAM WE'RE IN.

UM, BUT ONE THING THAT WE CANNOT DO, WE WILL NOT BE ABLE TO PAY FOUR MONTHS OF RENT FOR WHICH YOU'VE ALREADY RECEIVED PAYMENTS.

SO THERE WOULD NOT, YOU KNOW, SO WE WILL BE ABLE TO COVER ANY MONTHS OF RENTAL ASSISTANCE FOR WHICH YOU HAVE NOT RECEIVED ASSISTANCE PREVIOUSLY EITHER, OR SURE.

THE QUESTION WAS ABOUT, UM, HOW DO WE PAY RENTERS? I'M GLAD THAT QUESTION WAS BROUGHT UP BECAUSE IT SPEAKS TO ONE HUGE IMPROVEMENT THAT WE'RE MAKING IS THAT IF A LANDLORD REFUSES TO PARTICIPATE, CAN'T PARTICIPATE OR JUST, UM, DOESN'T RESPOND TO OUR REQUEST FOR INFORMATION.

WE CAN, UM, MAKE CERTAIN ATTEMPTS.

WE'RE REQUIRED TO MAKE A CERTAIN NUMBER OF ATTEMPTS TO,

[00:35:01]

TO REACH THE LANDLORD.

UM, AND ONCE THOSE ATTEMPTS HAVE BEEN MADE, WE CAN GO AHEAD AND PAY THE RENTER DIRECTLY, WHICH IS GOING TO BE A HUGE, UH, IMPROVEMENT AND BENEFIT TO THE RENTERS.

THEY NO LONGER HAVE TO WAIT A LONG TIME FOR A LANDLORD TO, TO, UH, RESPOND.

UM, WE WILL BE PAYING THOSE BY DIRECT DEPOSIT.

AND FOR THOSE THAT DON'T HAVE A BANK WE'LL MAKE OTHER ACCOMMODATIONS AND WE'LL HAVE TO WORK THAT OUT ON A CASE BY CASE BASIS, DEPENDING ON THE FAMILY SITUATION.

NO, THOSE ARE ALL THE GREAT, THANK YOU SO MUCH, EVERYBODY.

UM, AND THANK YOU AGAIN TO OUR POLL REPORTER.

UM, I'D LIKE TO NOW ASK THE SPEAKERS IF THEY HAVE ANY FINAL THOUGHTS BEFORE WE CONCLUDE, IF I MAY.

UM, I WOULD JUST LIKE TO ADD THAT TO THE RENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM RECEIVES AND ACCEPTS MEDIA RELAY SERVICE CALLS FROM ANYONE WHO MIGHT BE DEAF OR HARD OF HEARING.

UH, I FORGOT TO MENTION THAT DURING A PIECE, I WOULD JUST INTERJECT THAT.

UM, YOU KNOW, AGAIN, WE, WE FEEL VERY STRONGLY THAT THE RENT PROGRAM IS IF YOU'RE, UH, LIVING IN THE CITY OF AUSTIN WITHIN THE FULL PURPOSE JURISDICTION OF THE CITY, THIS PROGRAM REALLY IS YOUR BEST BET FOR GETTING QUICK ASSISTANCE AND HELP, UH, TO COVER, TO COVER YOUR RENT.

I KNOW THERE WAS A QUESTION THAT CAME UP ABOUT THE EVICTION MORATORIUM, IF, IF YOU'RE A MEMBER OF OUR COMMUNITY, IF YOU'RE A PERSON IN, YOU KNOW, WHO IS STRUGGLING TO PAY THE RENT, AND YOU'RE CONCERNED ABOUT THE EVICTION MORATORIUM, GIVE US A CALL AND SEE IF THIS PROGRAM CAN BE OF HELP TO YOU.

UM, THIS PROGRAM BRINGS TREMENDOUS RESOURCES THAT CAN QUICKLY GET, UH, TO YOU THAT CAN HOPEFULLY, UH, TAKE, TAKE SOME OF THAT WEIGHT OFF OF, UM, AND FEAR OF EVICTION.

WE WANT TO GET EVERYBODY IN OUR COMMUNITY THAT WE POSSIBLY CAN THROUGH THIS INCREDIBLY DIFFICULT PERIOD.

UM, AND, AND, AND BEING IN SAFE, DECENT HOUSING IS, IS AS OUR HIGHEST PRIORITY.

UM, WE CAN, UH, ALL THE OTHER THINGS THAT COME WITH THAT, THE ABILITY TO KEEP YOUR KIDS IN SCHOOL TO KEEP, UM, YOU KNOW, ENGAGED IN SCHOOL PROGRAMS TO KEEP, UM, UH, UH, YOU KNOW, UP WITH JOBS, TO ACCESS OTHER RESOURCES OF THE COMMUNITY FOR, FOR FOOD AND SUPPORT FOR ALL THE PAIN AND STRUGGLES THAT PEOPLE HAVE HAD FROM COVID-19, UM, AT THE CORE OF IT IS HAVING SAFE HOUSING.

AND SO THAT'S WHY THIS PROGRAM IS IT'S SO VITAL.

SO WE HOPE YOU WILL CONSIDER IT TO BE YOUR BEST BET FOR GETTING A QUICK HELP.

IF YOU LIVE IN THE CITY OF AUSTIN, AGAIN, THE PROCESS IS AS FAST AS, AND AS EASY AS WE CAN POSSIBLY HAVE IT BE.

UM, AND THERE ARE GREAT RESOURCES TO ASSIST YOU INCLUDING NEXT WEEK.

THE ABILITY TO WALK IN HERE TO THE HOUSING AUTHORITY OF THE CITY OF AUSTIN WITH AN APPOINTMENT BECAUSE OF THE PANDEMIC, BUT, UH, TO GET IN, YOU KNOW, TO CALL US SET UP A TIME.

AND WE'D LOVE TO VISIT WITH YOU TO, TO BE ABLE TO GET YOU AGAIN ACROSS THE FINISH LINE.

IF THIS PROGRAM IS, IS THE RIGHT ONE FOR YOU.

UM, AND AGAIN, WE'RE SO PROUD TO BE PARTNERED WITH THE CITY AND LOOK FORWARD TO, TO MAKING A SIGNIFICANT IMPACT OVER THE NEXT SIX MONTHS.

THANK YOU, MIKE.

WE KNOW THERE IS A HUGE NEED FOR RENTAL ASSISTANCE IN OUR COMMUNITY.

IF YOU HAVE BEEN HURT FINANCIALLY BY COVID-19 AND NEED IMMEDIATE HELP IN THE CITY OF AUSTIN, THEN RENT IS THE GREAT OPTION FOR YOU.

WITH HAFEZ PARTNERSHIP, WE HAVE SIGNIFICANTLY IMPROVED THE PROGRAM AND THE PROCESS IS FAST, EASY, AND THERE IS LOTS OF HELP TO APPLY.

MIKE JUST TALKED ABOUT ONE OF THE ASPECTS, UM, AS WE'VE ALL SHARED IS FAST WITH IMPROVED RESPONSE TIMES, IT'S EASY WITH FLEXIBILITY AND ALLOWED, UH, AND ALLOWABLE DOCUMENTATION, AND IT'S SUSTAINED.

YOU CAN RECEIVE UP TO 15 MONTHS OF RENTAL ASSISTANCE, AND LASTLY IT PRIORITIZES THOSE THAT ARE MOST IN NEED.

SO PLEASE VISIT AUSTIN, TEXAS.GOV/RENT TO APPLY OR CALL (512) 488-1397 TODAY.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

THANKS EVERYBODY.

UM, SO THIS CONCLUDES TODAY'S PRESS CONFERENCE.

THANK YOU AGAIN TO OUR SPEAKERS AND POOR REPORTER AND OUR VIEWERS, AND HAVE A NICE DAY.

THANKS.

Y'ALL .

* This transcript was compiled from uncorrected Speech-to-Text.