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[00:00:04]

ORDER THE COMMUNITY TECHNOLOGY

[CALL TO ORDER ]

AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION REGULAR MEETING WEDNESDAY, MAY 18TH, 2024 AT 6:40 PM WE ARE MEETING IN AUSTIN CITY HALL IN THE BOARDS AND COMMISSIONS ROOM.

AND, UM, MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC CAN ACCESS, UM, RECORDING ON AUSTIN TEXAS.GOV WITHIN THE A TXN WEBSITE.

UH, WE'LL START WITH OUR, UH, ROLL CALL.

I'LL GO AHEAD AND START WITH MYSELF, AND THEN WE'LL CONTINUE IN THE ROOM.

AND THEN I'LL GO AHEAD AND CALL COMMISSIONERS ONLINE FOR YOU ALL TO, UM, UM, TO INDICATE YOUR PRESENCE.

UH, STEVEN APODACA AND I AM REPRESENTING DISTRICT TWO.

MOVE ON INTO THE ROOM.

COMMISSIONER, I'M TRANSCRIPTER REPRESENTING DISTRICT 10.

THANK YOU.

COMMISSIONER MUJA, CAN YOU GO NEXT? COMMISSIONER KU REPRESENTING DISTRICT SIX.

THANK YOU.

COMMISSIONER ALDERETTE.

COMMISSIONER ALDER, REPRESENTING DISTRICT THREE.

THANK YOU.

COMMISSIONER PINA VIA COMMISSIONER ILLA REPRESENTING THE MAYOR BOSTON.

THANK YOU.

COMMISSIONER RICE, IF YOU'D BE SO KIND TO, UM, COME ON CAMERA.

AND IT LOOKS LIKE WE JUST LOST HIM.

WE'LL GIVE HIM JUST A MOMENT TO REJOIN.

LET'S, LET'S, AND WE WILL GIVE COMMISSIONER RICE JUST A COUPLE MORE MINUTES TO REJOIN.

LOOKS LIKE HE MAY BE REJOINING RIGHT NOW.

COMMISSIONER RICE, IF YOU CAN HEAR ME, WE'LL GIVE YOU JUST A MOMENT TO RECONNECT YOUR AUDIO AND, UH, TURN IT OVER TO YOU FOR YOUR, UM, REDUCTION.

HEY THERE.

COMMISSIONER RICE.

YOU SEE THAT YOU MAY HAVE CONNECTED THROUGH AUDIO? YEAH, IT'S THROUGH MY CELL PHONE, SO I THINK IT IS LESS THAN IDEAL, BUT I GUESS I'M HERE.

GOT IT.

WE'LL GO AHEAD AND, UH, PROCEED IF, UM, YOU CAN, UH, PROVIDE YOUR NAME AND, UM, CITY COUNCIL NUMBER, UH, GRIFFIN RICE DISTRICT FIVE.

OKAY, THANK YOU.

UM, OKAY.

WELL, WE ARE, WE ARE CALLED TO ORDER, IF EVERYONE CAN GO ON MUTE.

UM, FIRST ORDER OF BUSINESS PUBLIC

[PUBLIC COMMUNICATION: GENERAL]

COMMUNICATION.

WE HAVE A DISTINGUISHED GUEST WITH US.

UH, CHAIRMAN NEHA FROM THE ECONOMIC PROSPERITY COMMISSION HAS A PRESENTATION FOR US, SO I WILL GO AHEAD AND TURN

[00:05:01]

IT OVER TO HIM.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

UM, MY NAME IS MICHAEL NEHA.

I'M CHAIR OF THE ECONOMIC PROSPERITY COMMISSION.

I HAVE A MASTER'S IN COMPUTER SCIENCE AS WELL AS ECONOMICS.

SO FEEL FREE TO TALK TECHNICAL.

UM, I'M COMING HERE ON TWO TOPICS.

UH, THE FIRST ONE IS THE ECONOMIC PROSPERITY COMMISSION'S NOT WORKING PARTICULARLY WELL.

WE HAVE WONDERFUL, AMAZING MEMBERS, UH, BUT WE'RE NOT PRODUCING MANY RECOMMENDATIONS.

WE HAVE TROUBLE MEETING QUORUM.

UH, RECRUITING IS HARD.

THERE'S A LACK OF ENTHUSIASM.

SO WE HAVE TROUBLE EVEN MAKING QUORUM.

I'M ON OTHER BOARDS.

THEY FUNCTION WELL.

THEY USE DIFFERENT COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY.

WE'RE USING GROUP TEXTS, SLACK, GOOGLE DOCS, GOOGLE SHEETS, WIKIS.

THESE ARE ALL LIKE MODERN TOOLS FOR COMMUNICATING FOR GROUPS.

THEY'RE IN OTHER BOARDS.

UH, WE'RE NOT USING THESE TECHNOLOGIES BECAUSE OF THE TEXAS OPEN MEETINGS ACT.

UM, AND BECAUSE OF THE RESTRICTIONS OF THE CITY OF AUSTIN'S TECHNOLOGY.

UM, LET'S SEE.

I'VE ASSUME YOU'VE DONE THE TRAINING AND ARE FAMILIAR WITH THE TEXAS OPEN MEETINGS ACT.

UM, I'M TRYING TO DO THIS AS FAST AS POSSIBLE FOR Y'ALL.

UM, SO, UH, I DON'T KNOW ALL THE DETAILS OF THE TEXAS OPEN MEETINGS ACT, BUT ONE OF THE THINGS I DO KNOW IS CITY CA COUNCIL HAS CREATED ITS OWN MESSAGE BOARD.

THEY'VE CREATED TECHNOLOGY TO, TO WORK WITH THE TEXAS OPEN MEETINGS ACT AND IMPROVE COMMUNICATION.

UH, SO I WOULD LIKE THIS COMMISSION'S HELP IN MAKING MY COMMISSION WORK BETTER AND HOPEFULLY MAKING ALL BOARDS AND COMMISSIONS WORK BETTER, UH, TO FIGURE OUT WHAT THE, WHAT TECHNOLOGY IS LEGAL TO USE WITH THE TEXAS OPEN MEETINGS ACT, AND TO EITHER BUILD IT OURSELVES, WHICH I THINK IS POSSIBLE.

LIKE I'VE DEFINITELY LIKE SET UP WIKIS BEFORE.

I DON'T KNOW ABOUT INSTANT MESSAGING PLATFORMS, BUT WE CAN FIND SOMETHING THAT, UH, MATCHES.

I'D BE WILLING TO CONTRIBUTE SOME MONEY TO SET UP A FOUNDATION OR WHATEVER TO MAKE SURE IT FULFILLS ALL THE REQUIREMENTS OR TO ASK ANOTHER OPTION IS TO ASK CITY COUNCIL TO MAKE TECHNOLOGY ACCESSIBLE TO THE BOARDS AND COMMISSIONS.

SO I THINK THAT'S MY FIRST THING FOR Y'ALL.

UH, THE SECOND THING IS, UH, COMPLETELY UNRELATED.

I RAN INTO AN INTERESTING PIECE OF TECHNOLOGY.

I THINK THE CITY OF AUSTIN SHOULD USE IT.

SO CITY COUNCIL DOES PUBLIC COMMENT.

UH, SO WHEN THEY'RE GOING TO PASS A LAW, THEY HAVE PEOPLE COME IN AND THEY'RE ALLOWED TO SPEAK FOR THREE MINUTE TURNS OR TWO MINUTE, DEPENDING ON THE RULES.

UM, I'VE HEARD MULTIPLE FORMER MAYORS COMPLAINT ABOUT THIS PROCESS.

I'VE HEARD PRESIDENT CITY COUNCIL MEMBERS COMPLAIN ABOUT THIS PROCESS.

UH, BUT CITY COUNCIL WANTS TO GET FEEDBACK.

THEY, THEY READ POLLS, THEY MEET WITH GROUPS OF RESIDENTS.

THEY'RE IN, THEY'RE ON SOCIAL MEDIA.

THEY'RE TRYING TO GET THIS FEEDBACK.

IT'S JUST THIS PROCESS IS NOT THAT GREAT FOR IT.

UM, UH, THERE'S A SHORTAGE.

YOU KNOW, IF YOU HAVE THREE MINUTES, THERE'S A SHORTAGE OF MEANINGFUL COMMUNICATION.

IT, IT'S REALLY HARD TO PACKAGE THE COMPLETE IDEA THAT YOU'D LIKE TO COMMUNICATE IN THREE MINUTES.

IT'S HARD TO GET CITY COUNCIL TO EVEN LISTEN BECAUSE THEY'RE LISTENING.

YOU KNOW, WITH THE, THE HOUSING MEETINGS RECENTLY HAD OVER 12 HOURS OF PUBLIC COMMENT.

SO TRYING TO GET THEM TO PAY ATTENTION IN THAT IS DIFFICULT.

EVEN IF YOU HAVE A GOOD IDEA, IT'S HARD FOR CITY COUNCIL TO GET A SENSE OF WHETHER OR NOT THE WHOLE ROOM, LIKE THE WHOLE OF AUSTIN ACTUALLY AGREES WITH THAT SENTIMENT.

UM, AND THE PEOPLE SPEAKING AT THAT IN PUBLIC COMMENT ARE THE ONES AVAILABLE TO SPEAK AT THAT TIME OR CALL IN AT THAT TIME, WHICH MEANS A LOT OF AUSTIN DOESN'T ACTUALLY PROVIDE FEEDBACK.

SO THE TECHNOLOGY I FOUND OUT ABOUT IS POLIS.

POL IS, THAT'S THE URL AND THE NAME OF IT.

UH, IT'S A WEBSITE THAT WORKS ON ALL INTERNET DEVICES.

IT CAN QUICKLY AND EASILY GATHER THE OPINION OF THOUSANDS OF USERS AT ONCE, AND THE USERS ARE ALLOWED TO CONTRIBUTE IDEAS AND GET FEEDBACK FROM THE OTHER USERS OF IT.

UM, I DON'T KNOW IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO SEE A DEMO.

I'M LOGGED IN AND I COULD SHOW YOU KIND OF WHAT IT LOOKS LIKE.

UM, SURE.

GO AHEAD AND PROCEED.

ALRIGHT.

ALL RIGHT.

I'M TRYING TO, ALL RIGHT.

SO THIS IS A DEMO ON POLIS THAT I'VE SET UP.

UM, UH, THE, DAN SHOULD HAVE SENT Y'ALL A LINK IF YOU, IF YOU WANNA SEE IT CLOSER.

[00:10:01]

UM, SO WHAT POLIS DOES IS YOU TYPE, YOU START WITH A WHOLE BUNCH OF SET STATEMENTS AND PEOPLE CAN AGREE OR DISAGREE WITH A STATEMENT.

SO, UH, I SET UP AN EXAMPLE FOR THE BOARDS AND COMMISSIONS COMMUNICATION.

SO WE JUST TALKED ABOUT, OR I JUST TALKED ABOUT, LIKE HOW COMMUNICATION IS AN ISSUE FOR BOARDS AND COMMISSIONS.

SO YOU COULD PARTICIPATE IN THIS POLL AND AGREE OR DISAGREE WITH STATEMENTS.

SO THE STATEMENT ON MY SCREEN SAYS, BOARD'S COMMISSION MEETINGS SHOULD BE HELD IN PERSON AND NOT ALLOW MEMBERS TO ATTEND BY VIDEO CONFERENCE.

SO YOU COULD AGREE OR DISAGREE WITH THAT STATEMENT OR PASS, AND SO I'LL DISAGREE.

AND THEN YOU'RE SHOWN ANOTHER STATEMENT.

IN THIS CASE, CITY OF AUSTIN SHOULD IMPROVE COMMUNICATION AND COLLABORATION BETWEEN DIFFERENT BOARDS AND COMMISSIONS.

YOU COULD AGREE OR DISAGREE.

SO POLIS, THIS IS THE INTERACTION FOR USERS.

IT'S VERY QUICK, IT'S VERY SIMPLE.

MOST USERS ARE JUST GOING TO CLICK AGREE OR DISAGREE.

THEY MAY SEE 10 STATEMENTS AND THEN DECIDE THEY'VE COMMUNICATED ENOUGH, OR THEY MAY GO THROUGH MORE.

THERE'S A LOT OF MATH BEHIND THIS.

IT ALLOW, SO POLIS IS SHOWING THE QUESTIONS THAT WILL PROVIDE THE MOST INFORMATION FROM THAT USER.

SO IF IT'S ALREADY KNOW SOME ATTRIBUTE ABOUT THE USER AND HAS SEEN CORRELATION IN OTHER ANSWERS FROM OTHER USERS, IT WON'T ASK CERTAIN QUESTIONS OF THAT USER.

IT'LL ASK THE QUESTION THAT IT CAN LEAST PREDICT FOR THAT USER.

AND LIKEWISE FOR THE WHOLE GROUP, IT'S TRYING TO, IF A QUESTION HAS NOT BEEN ANSWERED BY ANYONE, THAT'S PROBABLY THE FIRST ONE YOU'LL GET.

UM, SO IT'S TRYING TO GET AS MUCH INFORMATION.

UH, THE OTHER THING IT DOES IS IT DOES THAT MATHEMATICS AND WILL IDENTIFY GROUPS OF PEOPLE WHO ARE ANSWERING THE SAME WAY.

AND SO THERE MAY BE LIKE THREE GROUPS THAT IT IDENTIFIES THAT ARE ANSWERING THE SAME WAY.

AND YOU CAN SEE WHICH QUESTIONS THOSE GROUPS OVERLAP ON WHICH ONES THEY AGREE ON AND WHICH ONES THEY DON'T ON WHICH THEY DIFFER.

AND I THINK THAT'S VERY USEFUL FOR CITY COUNCIL TO FIGURE OUT, LIKE, WHAT DOES A LOT OF AUSTIN AGREE ON? WHAT CAN THEY WORK ON QUICKLY AND PUSH FORWARD WITHOUT MUCH FEEDBACK OR MUCH PUSHBACK FROM, FROM RESIDENTS OF AUSTIN.

THE SO PULLIS IS NOT JUST THE INITIAL STATEMENTS.

IF ANYBODY WANTS TO LOWER ON THE SCREEN, IS, IS THIS BOX AND YOU CAN ENTER A NEW STATEMENT THAT OTHER PEOPLE CAN VOTE ON.

I DON'T THINK MOST USERS WILL USE THAT, BUT I THINK MANY ACTIVISTS WILL, MANY ACTIVISTS WILL SAY, HEY, THIS IS OUR PLATFORM.

LET'S SEE IF MOST OF AUSTIN AGREES WITH IT OR MAYBE FIND THE DISTINCTION.

ONE OF THE USEFUL THINGS HERE IS TO TAKE A STATEMENT AND THEN, OH WAIT, LET'S REFINE THAT STATEMENT.

YOU KNOW, IS IT, YOU KNOW, THE QUESTION ABOUT WHETHER OR NOT BOARD THAT'S IN COMMISSION SHOULD BE IN PERSON OR NOT.

UM, IT COULD BE SHOULD BE, YOU KNOW, DEFAULT TO IN PERSON AND, BUT STILL ALLOW VIDEO CONFERENCE.

SO YOU MIGHT BE ABLE TO FIND A, A MORE CONDITIONED STATEMENT THAT MORE PEOPLE AGREE WITH.

SO I THINK THIS IS A REALLY INTERESTING TECHNOLOGY IN TERMS OF GETTING OPINION FROM EVERYBODY.

IT CERTAINLY FALLS INTO THIS COMMISSION'S AREA, NOT ECONOMIC PROSPERITY.

UH, SO I'VE BROUGHT IT TO YOU AND MY HOPE IS THAT YOU'LL PICK IT UP, TAKE A LOOK AT IT AND PASS IT ON AS A RECOMMENDATION TO CITY COUNCIL.

THANK YOU.

ALRIGHT.

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THAT.

ARE WE ABLE TO ASK QUESTIONS FROM PUBLIC TESTIMONY? UH, I DO HAVE A COUPLE QUESTIONS AND THEN WE CAN UP, WE CAN OPEN IT UP TO THE REST OF THE COMMISSION.

I AM CURIOUS, WHAT OTHER COMMISSIONS HAVE YOU ENGAGED WITH ALREADY AROUND THESE TOPIC AREAS ON THESE? NONE.

NONE.

OKAY.

GREAT.

GOOD TO HEAR.

UM, YEAH, SO FOR US, UH, SO CHAIR NEHA AND I ACTUALLY, UH, MET ONE-ON-ONE OF A COUPLE TIMES ALREADY.

AND, UM, LEADING IN THIS CONVERSATION, I ACTUALLY PUT AN AGENDA ITEM, UH, FOR, UH, FOR US AS A COMMISSION TO ACT ON LATER IN, IN THE MEETING TO STAND UP A, A FORMAL WORKING GROUP TO WORK WITH HI WITH HIM, AS WELL AS THE ECONOMIC PROSPERITY COMMISSION ON THESE TOPIC AREAS AS WELL AS ANYTHING ELSE THAT WE MIGHT IDENTIFY.

SO, UM, IF, UM, IF YOU ALL, UM, IF OTHER COMMISSIONERS ARE INTERESTED IN, UH, ENGAGING WITH, UH, CHAIRMAN NEHA AS WELL AS THE ECONOMIC PROSPERITY COMMISSION, DEFINITELY RAISE YOUR HAND LATER IN THE, UM, IN THE MEETING.

BUT I'LL GO AHEAD AND OPEN IT UP TO THE REST OF THE COMMISSION MEMBERS IF YOU ALL HAVE ANY QUESTIONS FOR CHAIRMAN NEHA .

UH, YEAH.

UM, YOU WERE MENTIONING WHAT ALL THESE, OOPS, YOU WERE MENTIONING ALL THE SOCIAL MEDIA TOOLS, ET CETERA.

UM, UNFORTUNATELY I THINK , THE, THE, YOU KNOW, THE RULES ARE PRETTY STRICT, SO I I, I, I FEEL FOR YOU, BUT I THINK THERE ARE LIMITATIONS BECAUSE OF WALKING QUORUM

[00:15:01]

AND ALL THOSE RESTRICTIONS, UH, THAT COME ALONG.

AND SO I DON'T KNOW IF WE ARE ANY BETTER OFF THAN YOU ARE WHEN IT COMES TO, UH, ONLINE OR SOCIAL MEDIA TOOLS THAT WE CAN USE.

SO MY BELIEF IS LIKE, LONG AS IT, THE DISCUSSIONS ARE PUBLIC AND INVOL ARE ACCESSIBLE TO ALL COMMISSIONERS, I BELIEVE THERE, THERE IS ROOM TO LIKE MAKE SOMETHING THAT'S USEFUL.

YEP.

UM, ALSO THERE IS, UH, SECTION 5 51 0.006, WHICH IS, I BELIEVE WHERE CITY COUNCIL GOT THEIR MESSAGE BOARD.

MM-HMM.

.

AND I THINK THAT, UH, THAT SECTION IS BROADER THAN JUST A MESSAGE BOARD.

MM-HMM.

.

AND SO WE COULD INVESTIGATE MM-HMM.

ESPECIALLY LIKE MESSAGE BOARDS OR TOOLS FROM LIKE THE 1990S.

LIKE, WE'VE, WE'VE BUILT SOME BETTER COMMUNICATION PLATFORMS IN THE LAST 20 YEARS.

ABSOLUTELY.

YEAH.

ABSOLUTELY.

YEAH.

BUT YOU KNOW, AS FAR, I'M SORRY TO CARRY ON WHAT I WAS SAYING.

UH, THIS WHOLE IDEA ABOUT, UM, UH, PARTICIPATING ONLINE STARTED WITH THIS COMMISSION.

WE KEPT PUSHING AND PUSHING, AND FINALLY, THIS IS THE FIRST MEETING I'M ATTENDING IN PERSON IN THREE YEARS.

ABSOLUTELY.

UM, OPPORTUNITIES TO, TO, TO REIMAGINE HOW WE WORK AS A COMMISSION, AS A CITY, UM, AS ADVISORS TO CITY COUNCIL.

UM, SO LOOKING FORWARD TO, TO ENGAGING WITH, UH, WITH YOUR COMMISSION ON THESE ITEMS. UH, I'LL OPEN IT UP TO THE COMMISSIONERS ONLINE AS WELL.

UM, IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO COME ON CAMERA AND ASK CHAIRMAN NEHA ANY QUESTIONS? OKAY.

NO, I DON'T THINK WE'RE GETTING ANY QUESTIONS ONLINE.

I WANT TO THANK YOU CHAIR NEHA FOR, UH, THE PRESENTATION AS WELL AS COMING IN PERSON.

ALRIGHT, I'LL YOU'RE WELCOME.

AND I THINK I FIGURED OUT HOW TO STOP SHARING .

UM, YEAH, I, JUST TO NOTE, I DON'T KNOW HOW JOINT WORKING GROUPS MEET WORK.

MM-HMM.

.

SO WE MAY WANNA ASK STAFF ABOUT THAT.

YEAH.

YEAH.

WE'RE, AFTER WE GET THE, THE GROUP OF, UH, COMMISSIONERS WHO ARE INTERESTED TOGETHER, WE'LL COORDINATE THROUGH OUR RESPECTIVE, UM, LIAISONS FOR SURE.

OKAY.

ALRIGHT.

OKAY.

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

THANK YOU.

OKAY.

IN THE INTEREST OF, UH, SO WE DO HAVE, UH, ADDITIONAL STAFF BRIEFINGS AND DISCUSSION ITEMS, UM, IN THE INTEREST OF ALLOWING, UM, OUR GUEST SPEAKERS TO POTENTIALLY DROP EARLY AND NOT HAVING TO SIT THROUGH, UH, ADDITIONAL ITEMS. I'M GONNA CALL THE ITEMS OUT OF ORDER, UM, UNLESS THERE IS ANYONE WHO DISAGREES NOT HEARING ANYONE.

SO, UH, I'M GONNA SKIP TO DISCUSS

[3. FY 24-29 Consolidated Plan Community Needs Assessment Presentation & Discussion (Chris Duran, Senior Research Analyst; Julie Smith Community Engagement Specialist) ]

TO DISCUSSION ITEM NUMBER THREE NOW, UM, FROM THE HOUSING DEPARTMENT.

SO WE HAVE SOME ESTEEMED GUESTS, CHRIS DURAN, JULIE SMITH, I BELIEVE THOSE ARE OUR, AS WELL AS JAMES MAY, UH, WANT TO GIVE, I'M NOT SURE WHO'S PRESENTING ON THOSE ITEMS, BUT WANT TO GIVE YOU ALL, UH, THE FLOOR.

HELLO.

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR, UM, HAVING US.

UM, I THINK IT'S THE FIRST TIME I'VE BEEN INTRODUCED AS ESTEEMED.

CHECK THAT OFF.

UM, I APPRECIATE THAT .

UM, SO WE, UM, WANNA RESPECT YOUR TIME TONIGHT, BUT WE DEFINITELY ALSO REALLY VALUE YOUR INPUT, SO I'LL GET RIGHT INTO IT.

UH, MY NAME'S CHRIS DURAN.

I AM, UM, OUR GRANTS PROGRAM MANAGER WITH THE HOUSING DEPARTMENT OF THE CITY OF AUSTIN.

ONLINE WITH US TODAY ARE ALSO JAMIE MAY, MY COLLEAGUE, WHO'S OUR, UM, HOUSING AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT OFFICER.

AND, UM, WE, SO WE WERE, WE CONDUCTED A COMMUNITY NEEDS ASSESSMENT FOR OUR FIVE YEAR, WHAT'S CALLED CONSOLIDATED PLAN, BUT IN OTHER WORDS, IT'S A FIVE YEAR PLAN, STRATEGIC PLAN FOR, UM, FEDERAL SPENDING, UM, PARTICULARLY FOR FEDERAL GRANTS THAT WE GET FROM THE US DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT.

AND I'M GONNA GO IN, UH, INTO THIS PRESENTATION A LITTLE BIT ABOUT HOW THAT CONNECTS TO THE WORK THAT YOU ALL DO ON THIS COMMISSION, HOW IT CONNECTS TO COMMUNITY TECHNOLOGY, PARTICULARLY ISSUES AROUND DIGITAL DIVIDE, ET CETERA.

BUT, UM, I WILL TRY TO NOT SPEND TOO MUCH TIME ON THE PRESENTATION JUST BEING THAT ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT, OR REALLY A KEY PART REASON OF US COMING BEFORE YOU ALL TODAY IS TO POTENTIALLY GET YOUR INPUT ON, UM, WHAT YOU ALL SEE

[00:20:01]

AS THE, UM, OR WHAT YOUR ADVOCACY IS FOR COMMUNITY NEEDS AND SPENDING PRIORITIES AND ANY INPUT THAT YOU HAVE FOR THE CITY AND FOR THE HOUSING DEPARTMENT IN PARTICULAR ON THIS PROCESS.

AND AS I'LL GET TO IN A FUTURE SLIDE AS WELL, UM, IT, IT, IT'S, IT MIGHT KIND OF BE A LOT THAT WE'RE COVERING IN THESE SLIDES, BUT WE CAN DEFINITELY TAKE INPUT FROM THIS COMMISSION GOING FORWARD.

UM, AND I'LL SHARE MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THAT.

BUT IT, WE DON'T HAVE TO JUST GET YOUR INPUT TONIGHT.

IT'LL BE AN OPPORTUNITY GOING FORWARD, UM, TO GET US INPUT DIGITALLY AS WELL.

SO I'LL GET INTO IT.

CAN YOU ALL SEE MY SCREEN OKAY, OR ACTUALLY, I THINK SOMEBODY ELSE IS PROJECTING THAT.

SO, UM, THANK YOU FOR THAT NEXT SLIDE.

ALRIGHTY.

UM, AND, UH, IN INTEREST OF TIME, I'LL, UM, I'LL, I'LL MOVE FORWARD HERE.

THIS IS JUST A TABLE OF CONTENTS.

YOU ALL WILL HAVE THIS, UH, SLIDE DECK FOR YOUR REVIEW.

UH, NEXT SLIDE PLEASE.

THANK YOU.

SO, UM, JUST TO SET THE TABLE A LITTLE BIT REGARDING HOW WE FUND OUR PROGRAMMING HERE AND WHAT WE'RE TA WHAT FUNDING STREAMS WE'RE TALKING ABOUT THIS EVENING, UM, ON YOUR SCREEN, AND LIKE I SAID, YOU'LL HAVE THE SLIDE DECK.

THESE ARE THE DIFFERENT, UM, FUNDING STREAMS FOR THE HOUSING DEPARTMENT OF THE CITY OF AUSTIN, BOTH LOCAL AND FEDERAL.

UM, AND WHAT WE'RE GOING TO, UH, ZERO IN TODAY ON ARE THE HUD AND I, MAYBE I SHOULD HAVE SAID, UH, THAT'S AN ACRONYM FOR US DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT, UH, THE ANNUAL GRANTS THAT WE GET FROM THEM.

NEXT SLIDE PLEASE.

SO, UM, THE US DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT, HUD ALLOCATES FUNDING TO MUNICIPALITIES AND STATE THAT WE GET THROUGH A FORMULA BASIS ANNUALLY.

UM, THESE, UH, FUNDS ARE, UM, TYPICALLY IN RECENT YEARS, THEY'VE BEEN APPROXIMATELY $14 MILLION.

WE JUST ACTUALLY, UM, THIS IS ONE OF THE FIRST PRESENTATIONS WE'RE GIVING WHERE WE ACTUALLY HAVE OUR FY 24 25 AMOUNTS.

UM, WE WERE SURPRISED TO SEE IT GO DOWN A LITTLE ABOUT 13.7 MILLION FOR FY 24 25.

UM, BUT EVEN WITH THAT SMALL DECREASE, UM, WHEN WE'RE TALKING ABOUT THE NEXT FIVE YEARS THAT WE'RE PLANNING FOR, UM, IT'S STILL LIKELY IN THE 60 TO $70 MILLION RANGE OF FUNDS THAT WE'RE TALKING ABOUT.

SO IT'S A PRETTY IMPORTANT PROCESS.

WE REALLY DO VALUE YOUR INPUT.

UM, THESE FOUR GRANTS ARE FOR AREAS IN AFFORDABLE HOUSING, COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT, ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, AND PUBLIC SERVICES.

SO IT'S NOT JUST STRICTLY HOUSING.

THERE'S, UM, COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT PIECES, UM, THUS, YOU KNOW, REALLY KIND OF GETS INTO A LOT OF DIFFERENT SPACES.

AND SO WE'RE VISITING WITH A LOT OF DIFFERENT COMMISSIONS, UM, THAT COVER DIFFERENT TOPICS.

UM, YEAH.

THANK YOU .

UH, NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

UH, NEXT SLIDE.

OKAY.

THIS IS JUST A QUICK PICTURE OF WHAT WE'RE TALKING ABOUT AS FAR AS OUR, UM, PLANNINGS, UH, REGIME THAT WE'RE UNDER WITH HUD.

UM, THEY REQUIRE THAT WE SUBMIT ANNUAL ACTION PLANS AS WELL AS ANNUAL PERFORMANCE AND EVALUATION REPORTS.

THOSE ARE ALL AVAILABLE ON OUR WEBSITE.

UM, BUT RIGHT NOW WE'RE DOING OUR FIVE YEAR CONSOLIDATED PLAN.

UM, AND THAT'S A PARTICULARLY IMPORTANT YEAR BEING THAT IT ALLOCATES, UM, OR IT SETS THE STRATEGIC PRIORITIES THAT WE'LL BE FUNDING OVER THE NEXT FIVE YEARS AND ALLOCATES FUNDING TOWARDS THOSE PRIORITIES.

NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

UM, AND THESE ARE THE GRANTS THAT WE'RE TALKING ABOUT.

AND LIKE I SAID EARLIER, I KNOW WE'RE GOING THROUGH A LOT OF INFORMATION QUICKLY.

YOU'LL HAVE ALL THIS INFORMATION, BUT WE DO LIKE TO TRY TO GIVE, YOU KNOW, THE CONTEXT OF WHAT EXACTLY WE'RE ASKING YOUR INPUT FOR.

UM, COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT BLOCK GRANT, I'D SAY WOULD BE MOST, UM, THE MOST IN THE, THE GRANT THAT THIS, UM, COMMISSION WOULD HAVE THE MOST INTEREST IN.

BEING THAT IT'S DEFINITELY THE GRANT OUT OF THE FOUR THAT HAS THE MOST DIVERSE ARRAY OF ELIGIBLE USES.

UM, SO WHILE AS ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF YOUR SCREEN, YOU HAVE HOME INVESTMENT PARTNERSHIPS, IT'S, IT'S QUITE FOCUSED ON CREATING AFFORDABLE HOUSING FOR LOW INCOME HOUSEHOLDS, PERIOD.

SO IT'S HOUSING PROGRAMS, UM, I'LL GET INTO WHAT EXACTLY THOSE ARE CURRENTLY.

BUT COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT BLOCK GRANT, THOSE PROVIDE, UM, BOTH, YOU KNOW, DECENT HOUSING AND SUITABLE LIVING ENVIRONMENT.

BUT ALSO THERE'S, UNDER ITS REMIT IS EXPANDING ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITIES FOR LOW INCOME PEOPLE.

UM, AND THAT CAN INCLUDE A LOT OF DIFFERENT PUBLIC SERVICES.

AND THEN, UM, WE DO HAVE, UH, HOUSING OPPORTUNITIES FOR PERSONS WITH AIDS AND EMERGENCY SOLUTIONS GRANT, THE LATTER BEING, UM, A FOCUS SOLELY ON HOMELESSNESS AND THOSE TWO BOTTOM GRANTS, ALTHOUGH WE'RE THE LEAD AGENCY, UM, RECEIVING THE FUNDS FOR THE CITY, THEY'RE ADMINISTERED BY AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH.

NEXT SLIDE PLEASE.

[00:25:02]

SO HOW ARE FUNDING DECISIONS MADE? UM, THIS IS A KEY PROCESS WE'RE GOING THROUGH RIGHT NOW WITH THE COMMUNITY PARTICIPATION.

UM, BUT WE ALSO, UM, CONSIDER, UM, HOUSING AND NEEDS AND MAR DATA FROM HOUSING NEEDS AND MARKET ANALYSIS THAT OUR STAFF CONDUCT, AS WELL AS OTHER PLANNING EFFORTS THAT ARE DONE LOCALLY AT THE LOCAL LEVEL AT THE CITY.

UM, AND ALSO, UH, ELIGIBILITY OF FUNDS AND THE AVAILABLE USE OF FUNDING.

UM, THE, UH, AMOUNT OF FUNDING WE GET DOES FLUCTUATE ANNUALLY, AS I ALLUDED TO EARLIER.

NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

UM, JUST IN INTEREST OF TIME, I'M GONNA, UM, MOVE FORWARD, UM, HERE, NEXT SLIDE.

SO WHAT WE'RE HEARING FROM THE COMMUNITY, UM, WE FEEL LIKE IT'S GOOD TO CHECK IN WITH, UM, GROUPS LIKE YOU ALL JUST TO, UM, KIND OF USE YOU AS A SOUNDING BOARD FOR WHAT WE'RE HEARING.

AND, UM, YOU, YOU KNOW, IT TENDS TO, UM, GENERATE GOOD DISCUSSIONS OR INPUT AS FAR AS WHAT WE'RE MISSING OR WHAT WE DEFINITELY ARE GETTING RIGHT AS FAR AS, UM, WHAT WE'RE DOCUMENTING AS LIKE INPUT IN OUR COMMUNICATE COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT EFFORTS.

SO NEXT SLIDE PLEASE.

SO, KEY FEEDBACK THEMES THAT WE'RE, UM, NOTING, UM, ARE I NEED IMMEDIATE HELP.

UM, I, AND THEN, UH, I, I GUESS IT'S, I DIDN'T WANT TO GO OUTTA ORDER, BUT I'M SKIPPING TO THE BOTTOM.

I NEED HELP MAINTAINING STABILITY.

UM, I JUST SEE THAT DISTINCTION AS IMPORTANT BEING THAT WE DO HAVE PROGRAMS THAT ASSIST FOLKS WHO, FOLKS, FAMILIES WHO ARE IN, YOU KNOW, A A MORE OF A CRISIS SITUATION OR JUST NEEDING IMMEDIATE HELP, UM, IN A, IN AN URGENT SITUATION.

BUT WE DO HAVE A LOT OF CLIENTELE THAT PERHAPS ARE NOT IN THAT IMMEDIATE NEED, BUT ARE PERHAPS ONE PAYCHECK AWAY OR ONE EMERGENCY AWAY FROM HAVING STABILITY.

AND SO THEY'RE SEEKING, UM, SOME ASSISTANCE IN, UM, GETTING A, A STRONGER FOUNDATION OF STABILITY.

UM, ALSO I WANT THE OPPORTUNITY TO BUILD WEALTH AND LONG-TERM STABILITY.

AND, UM, THE, I THINK ONE OF THE BIGGEST, UM, THE BIGGEST THINGS THAT WE'VE HEARD THIS YEAR IN THIS COMMUNITY NEEDS ASSESSMENT PROCESS, AND IT REALLY, UM, I THINK DOVETAILS KIND OF WELL INTO YOUR PUBLIC SPEAKER EARLIER, IS I NEED A MORE ACCESSIBLE PROCESS.

UM, THERE ARE A LOT OF WAYS THAT WE CAN ADDRESS THIS, BUT IT'S DEFINITELY ONE OF THE HOT, THE, THE, I I WOULD SAY A TOP THEME THAT WE'VE HEARD KIND OF EMPHASIZED TO US THIS YEAR.

AND, UM, I JUST, I JUST SAY THERE'S A LOT OF WAYS TO ADDRESS THIS BEING THAT I APPRECIATED HEARING, UM, YOU KNOW, THE EXPLORATION THAT'S GOING ON, UH, WITH TECH THAT YOUR PUBLIC, PUBLIC, UM, SPEAKER EARLIER ALLUDED TO.

UM, WE'RE ALSO GETTING OTHER, UH, INPUT FROM SUCH, UH, FOLKS SUCH AS AT THE COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT COMMISSION WHO HAVE EMPHASIZED THAT MAYBE, UM, IN ADDITION TO ALL WE'RE DOING DIGITALLY, UM, SOMETIMES YOU CAN'T REPLACE, YOU KNOW, THAT, THAT PERSON TO PERSON CONTACT AND MAYBE BRINGING BACK A LITTLE BIT OF OUR, UM, OUR TARGETED NEIGHBORHOOD DOOR TO DOOR EFFORTS.

SO WE'RE GETTING A DIVERSE ARRAY OF INPUT ON HOW WE CAN ADDRESS THAT.

BUT THAT'S A, A TOP THING AND DEFINITELY SOMETHING WE, WE'D LOVE TO LOOK TO THIS COMMISSION TOO FOR ANY ADVICE GOING FORWARD IN THE YEARS TO COME.

UM, NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

AND, UM, AGAIN, JUST IN THE, UH, UH, UH, JUST FOR FOR TIME, I'M GONNA GO AHEAD AND I THINK I'VE KIND OF COVERED THESE, SO, UH, WE CAN SKIP THE NEXT, UH, THREE OR FOUR SLIDES.

OKAY.

SO, UM, THIS IS WHERE I'LL GIVE Y'ALL A LITTLE BIT OF A BREAK, UM, HEARING ME TALK, I AM GONNA PASS IT OFF TO JAMIE MAE, OUR COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT OFFICER, TO GIVE Y'ALL A SNAPSHOT OF, UM, WHAT EXACTLY WE CURRENTLY FUND WITH, UH, THESE GRANTS.

THANKS, CHRIS.

THIS IS ALSO A CHANCE FOR CHRIS TO GO TAKE A BREATH AND, UH, TAKE A DRINK, SO, OH, THANKS.

UM, THROUGH OUR, UH, THROUGH OUR, UM, MULTIPLE PROGRAMS THROUGH THE HOUSING DEPARTMENT AND AUSTIN HOUSING FINANCE CORPORATION, WE PRIMARILY FOCUS ON THE CDBG AND HOME COLUMNS THAT YOU SEE HERE.

UH, AS CHRIS MENTIONED, UH, AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH MANAGES THE HOPWA AND THE ESG DOLLARS.

UM, SO JUST TO START WITH THE CDBG AND HOME, UH, WE DO DEPLOY THOSE DOLLARS THROUGH OUR RENTAL AND OWNERSHIP HOUSING DEVELOPMENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS. THOSE PROVIDE GAP FINANCING FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF AFFORDABLE HOUSING.

UM, WE ALSO MARRY THOSE WITH SOME OF OUR DEVELOPER INCENTIVE BASED PROGRAMS SUCH AS SMART HOUSING OR AFFORDABILITY UNLOCKED.

THOSE DON'T PROVIDE ANY, UH, UH, FUNDING, UH, FOR DEVELOPMENT.

HOWEVER, THEY DO INCREASE ENTITLEMENTS AND MAKE THOSE DOLLARS GO FURTHER.

WE ALSO HAVE RENTER ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS, UH, WHEREIN WE HAVE A CONTRACT WITH THE HOUSING AUTHORITY OF THE CITY OF AUSTIN FOR A TENANT-BASED RENTAL ASSISTANCE THAT IS ESSENTIALLY A VOUCHER PROGRAM.

UM, AND WE PROVIDE ARCHITECTURAL

[00:30:01]

BARRIER REMOVAL, UH, WHICH, UH, WOULD BE THE INSTALLATION OF RAMPS FOR A HOME, UM, OR FOR GRAB BARS IN A BATHROOM, OR WIDENING DOORWAYS OR HALLWAYS, THINGS LIKE THAT.

UM, WE ALSO FUND A TENANTS RIGHTS ASSISTANCE PROGRAM, UH, THROUGH, UH, TEXAS RIO GRANDE LEGAL AID.

NOW, WE ALSO SUPPORT HOMEOWNERS, UH, ALSO THROUGH AR, ARCHITECTURAL BARRIER REMOVAL.

UM, SO WE DO THAT BOTH FOR RENTERS AND FOR HOMEOWNERS.

UM, AND WE ALSO HAVE MULTIPLE REPAIR PROGRAMS FOR HOMEOWNERS, UH, THAT PROVIDE, UH, ANYWHERE FROM $5,000, UH, IMPROVEMENT TO UP TO A FULL REPLACEMENT OF THE UNIT.

UM, NOW THAT, AS YOU CAN IMAGINE, IS QUITE EXPENSIVE, SO WE DON'T LIKE TO DO THAT VERY OFTEN.

UH, BUT WE CAN PROVIDE UP TO $75,000 PER IMPROVEMENT THAT CAN REPLACE A ROOF REPAIR, A FOUNDATION, OR, UH, UM, JUST MAKE THE HOUSE LIVABLE.

AGAIN.

UNDER OUR HOME BUYER ASSISTANCE PROGRAM, WE DO PROVIDE DOWN PAYMENT ASSISTANCE UP TO $40,000 FOR HOUSEHOLDS EARNING LESS THAN 80% OF THE MEDIAN FAMILY INCOME.

NOW, $40,000 AS A DOWN PAYMENT DOESN'T GO VERY FAR IN A MARKET LIKE AUSTIN, WHERE THE AVERAGE RE UH, HOME PRICE IS JUST NORTH OF 500,000.

UM, HOWEVER, THESE PROGRAMS DO, UH, UH, LEAN AND LEVERAGE AGAINST OUR OWNERSHIP HOUSING DEVELOPMENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM, AS WELL AS OUR COMMUNITY LAND TRUST.

FINALLY, UH, IF YOU LOOK DOWN BELOW, UNDER HOMELESSNESS AS ASSISTANCE, WE ALSO HAVE OUR, WE HAVE NOTED OUR TENANT-BASED RENTAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAM IS SUPPORTING INDIVIDUALS EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS, UM, AS WELL AS SEVERAL PROGRAMS THROUGH AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH.

UM, AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH ALSO MANAGES OUR SPECIAL NEEDS ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS THROUGH FOR YOUTH MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES, SENIOR SERVICES AND CHILDCARE.

AND THEN FINALLY, OUR FRIENDS AT ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT DEPARTMENT HAVE MANAGED OUR FAMILY BUSINESS LOAN PROGRAM, AND WE HAVE PROVIDED FUNDING FOR CHODOS, WHICH ARE COMMUNITY HOUSING DEVELOPMENT ORGANIZATIONS.

AND THESE ARE NONPROFIT ENTITIES THAT, UH, PROVIDE AFFORDABLE HOUSING.

WE CAN GIVE THEM UP TO $50,000 IN OPERATING EXPENSE GRANTS PER YEAR.

UH, MY COMPUTER'S ABOUT TO DIE, SO I'M GONNA PASS IT BACK OVER TO CHRIS.

THANK YOU, .

OKAY.

UM, SO WE MAY LOSE JAMIE, BUT THAT'S, THAT'S OKAY.

MAYBE HE WILL COME BACK.

UM, SO IF WE CAN GO TO THE NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

OKAY.

AND, UM, ACTUALLY, I, I WILL, I WILL STAY HERE BECAUSE THIS IS A, A GOOD POINT OF WHERE WE COULD GET INPUT, JUST WHO DO WE SERVE? WE SERVE A BIT OVER 3000, UM, HOUSEHOLDS THAT COULD BE FAMILY OR, UM, I'M SORRY, INDIVIDUALS OR FAMILIES.

AND AS YOU SAY, IN THAT EXTREMELY LOW INCOME ERA, UM, BRACKET, UM, THAT'S DEFINITELY E EVERY YEAR.

THAT'S THE VAST MAJORITY OF OUR CLIENTELE, UM, THAT ARE, UM, THAT WE SERVE.

UM, A LITTLE UNDER UNDER 30% MFI IS MFI BEING MEDIAN FAMILY INCOME IS HOW HUD REQUIRES, WE KIND OF TRACK OUR, OUR DEMOGRAPHIC DATA AND JUST TO TRY TO KIND OF, UM, YOU KNOW, UH, THREAD THE NEEDLE INTO HOW THIS THREAD THE NEEDLE.

OH, GOSH, I THINK I'M HAVING SOME WEIRD TEXT, THIS WEIRD TEXT ECHOING.

I'LL JUST KEEP GOING.

UM, JUST KEEP GOING.

THE, UM, A LOT OF OUR CLIENTELE THAT WE ENGAGE WITH IN THE, THAT ZERO TO 30% MFI RANGE DEFINITELY, UM, FROM OUR, OUR, UM, RESEARCH AND, AND EVEN JUST OUR ANECDOTAL WORK WITH THE CLIENTELE, THEY REALLY, UM, ARE KIND OF THE KEY FOLKS WE'RE TALKING ABOUT WHEN WE TALK ABOUT THE DIGITAL DIVIDE.

UM, AND A LOT OF THE WAYS THAT, UM, YOU KNOW, WE, WE REALLY THRIVE AND GET CONNECTED AND, YOU KNOW, ARE ABLE TO SUBMIT, SUBMIT JOB APPLICATIONS AND, UM, YOU KNOW, TAKE ADVANTAGE OF SERVICES.

UM, IT'S REALLY, IT'S REALLY, IT BECOMES A BARRIER FOR THEM.

UM, WHICH IS WHY A HUD UM, IS REALLY KIND OF, KIND OF TURNING, UM, AN EYE TO TECHNOLOGY AND THE DIGITAL DIVIDE AS REALLY THINKING OF IT MORE AS, UM, YOU KNOW, A HOUSING ISSUE IN THE SENSE OF, YOU KNOW, WE EVENTUALLY WANT TO GET ALL HOUSING, UM, TO THE POINT WHERE THEY'RE CONNECTED, UM, TO LESSEN THIS DIGITAL DIVIDE.

UM, AND SO A LOT OF OUR CLIENTELE ARE THOSE, UM, THAT REALLY, UM, NEED ASSISTANCE AND GETTING THAT FOUNDATION AND GETTING, GETTING PLUGGED IN IN THAT SENSE IN OUR COMMUNITY.

SO, NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

SO, UM, I THINK THIS JUST 'CAUSE WE HAD, UM, SENT A, OUR, OUR, UH, PRESENTATION A FEW MONTHS AGO, AND THEN, AND THEN QUORUM WAS AN ISSUE.

THIS IS A, A LITTLE BIT OF AN OLD SLIDE.

UM, SO IT DOESN'T HAVE, WHAT I WANTED TO SHARE WAS, WHICH WAS THAT, UM, ACTUALLY MAYBE GO TO THE NEXT SLIDE.

IT MIGHT BE THERE.

[00:35:03]

OKAY.

AT LEAST HAS A LITTLE BIT OF THE INFORMATION.

UM, I, I, I WANT TO END AND KIND OF TURN IT OVER TO Y'ALL FOR ANY QUESTIONS OR ANY INPUT FOR, UM, FOR US.

BUT, UM, I THINK A KEY THING IS HIGHLIGHTING, UM, THIS URL WWW.SPEAKUPAUSTIN.ORG/MY COMMUNITY NEEDS.

UM, IF YOU'RE KIND OF PROCESSING THIS INFORMATION AND DON'T HAVE, YOU KNOW, TOO MUCH INPUT FOR US THIS EVENING.

UM, AND I KNOW Y'ALL HAVE PROBABLY HAVE, UM, A LOT MORE TO GET TO ON YOUR AGENDA.

THIS IS, UH, A PLACE WHERE WE CAN TAKE INPUT FROM YOU EITHER INDIVIDUALLY OR FROM A GROUP.

AND WHEN I SAY WE, IT'S, UM, NOT ONLY THE, UM, THE, THE, THE TEAM HERE, BUT THE, THE HOUSING DEPARTMENT, THE LEADERSHIP, UM, AS WE DIGEST ALL OF THE INPUT THAT COMES IN AT THIS LINK, UM, IT'S, UH, IT REALLY HELPS, UH, GUIDE OUR DECISIONS FOR THE NEXT FIVE YEARS GOING FORWARD.

UM, PARTICULARLY, UM, YOU KNOW, UH, THERE'S SO MANY, THERE'S SO MANY GOOD NEEDS, RIGHT? AND OF COURSE, DIGITAL CONNECTION IS ONE OF MANY GOOD NEEDS.

AND SO THE MORE INPUT WE GET FROM YOU ALL, UM, THE MORE WE CAN KIND OF UTILIZE, UM, THAT EXPERTISE AND THAT ADVICE, UH, IN THIS AREA.

SINCE, YOU KNOW, BEING A HOUSING DEPARTMENT, WE DO GET INTO A LOT OF AREAS WHERE MAYBE WE DON'T HAVE AS MUCH EXPERTISE, UM, IN ADMINISTERING, UM, YOU KNOW, SOME OF THE PROGRAMS THAT ARE TANGENTIALLY, UH, CONNECTED TO HOUSING LIKE THIS.

AND SO THERE'S ALSO INFORMATION HERE THAT YOU CAN REACH OUT TO US AT, UM, FOR, YOU KNOW, IF YOU'D LIKE US TO COME BACK OR IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS, PLEASE DON'T HESITATE TO TO EMAIL OR CALL.

UM, WE, UH, HAVE, UH, INCREASED, UM, SOME OF OUR, UH, UH, COMMUNICATION OPTIONS THIS YEAR.

YOU CAN TEXT MY COMMUNITY TO 2 3 2 2 4.

UM, AND, UH, WE ARE RECEIVING INPUT THAT WAY AS WELL.

AND I THINK MY INFORMATION MIGHT BE ON THE NEXT SLIDE IF WE WANT TO GO THERE, ACTUALLY, HERE, YOU CAN JUST, THERE WE GO.

UH, AND ACTUALLY, UH, IF WE COULD GO BACK THREE SLIDES TO THE PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD INFORMATION, I DO WANNA LET Y'ALL, OR I THINK IT'S 22 NEXT ONE.

THANK YOU.

YES.

I JUST WANTED TO HIGHLIGHT THIS, UM, WHAT WE ARE, IF, IF ANYONE IN YOUR COMMUNITY OR ANYONE IN YOUR DISTRICTS IS INTERESTED IN KIND OF, UH, ADVOCATING TO GET THEIR, THEIR INPUT, KIND OF, YOU KNOW, ESPECIALLY IN FRONT OF OUR DECISION MAKERS AND OUR LEADERS, WE ARE HAVING A, A PUBLIC HEARING BEFORE CITY COUNCIL ON THURSDAY, MAY 30TH REGARDING FEDERAL FUNDING USE, UH, GOING FORWARD FOR THE HOUSING DEPARTMENT.

AND ON MAY 14TH, WE'LL HAVE A PUBLIC HEARING BEFORE THE COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT COMMISSION.

UM, A AS WAS DISCUSSED EARLIER, IT CAN BE HARD TO MAKE THOSE CITY COUNCIL MEETINGS ATTEND.

SO FORTUNATELY, THE COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT COMMISSIONS MEETINGS ARE IN THE EVENING.

UH, AND THAT'S A, A PRETTY, UH, STRONG WAY TO ADVOCATE, UM, FOR, UM, PRIORITIES IN THIS PLAN.

BUT I'LL JUST GO TO THE LAST, UM, SLIDE LIKE WE WERE JUST ON SO Y'ALL CAN SEE MY INFORMATION.

AND THEN IF Y'ALL HAVE ANY QUESTIONS, WE CAN TAKE THOSE NOW.

HEY, CHRISTIAN, THIS IS, UH, STEVEN, THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR, UH, THE AMAZING, WE CAN MUTE HIM FOR THE AMAZING PRESENTATION.

UH, I DO HAVE, UM, JUST A FEW QUESTIONS.

UM, YEAH, THE FIRST, UM, SO OUR COMMISSION, AS WELL AS ALL THE OTHER COMMISSIONS RECENTLY SUBMITTED BUDGET RECOMMENDATIONS.

AND IT, IT SOUNDS FROM YOUR, FROM, UM, YOUR PRESENTATION THAT YOU REFERENCED PRIMARILY WORKING WITH THE COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT COMMISSION.

I'M JUST CURIOUS, DID ANY, UM, WERE, WAS THAT COMMISSION OR ANY OTHER COMMISSION ABLE TO MAKE BUDGET RECOMMENDATIONS FOR THE HOUSING DEPARTMENT ON YOUR BEHALF? UM, SO WHEN IT COMES TO BUDGET RECOMMENDATIONS AT THE LOCAL LEVEL, UM, I CAN'T SPEAK TO THOSE WITH VERY MUCH EXPERTISE.

WE WERE ABLE TO GET BUDGET RECOMMENDATIONS FROM COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT COMMISSION.

OKAY.

UM, FOR THE, THE FEDERAL LEVEL, I GUESS WE JUST DIDN'T CALL THEM BUDGET RECOMMENDATIONS.

IT WAS MORE JUST RECOMMENDATIONS FOR OUR, OUR FEDERAL SPENDING, SO TO SPEAK.

UM, I'M NOT SURE IF JAMIE'S STILL HERE, AND HE COULD SPEAK TO THAT A LITTLE MORE THAN ME, BUT DOES THAT, DOES THAT SOMEWHAT ANSWER YOUR QUESTION? UM, YEAH, THAT, THAT, THAT ANSWERS IT.

OKAY.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU FOR THAT.

UM, I'M ALSO CURIOUS, UH, YOU HAD MENTIONED THAT, UM, YOU'VE HAD COMMUNITY LISTENING SESSIONS, UH, NOT SURE IF YOU HAVE THIS INFORMATION OFF THE TOP OF YOUR HEAD, BUT I'M PARTICULARLY INTERESTED IN WHAT TECHNOLOGY RELATED NEEDS, UM, YOU ALL MAY HAVE HEARD FROM THE COMMUNITY.

YEAH, I, UM, I'M TRYING TO THINK OFF THE TOP OF MY

[00:40:01]

HEAD.

AND I KNOW THAT, UM, OUR COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT SPECIALIST, JULIE SMITH IS, IS ON, I DON'T KNOW IF SHE, UM, MIGHT WANNA CHIME IN.

UM, WE'VE JUST HEARD SO MUCH FEEDBACK THAT NOTHING IS COMING SURE.

TO, TO MIND FOR ME, RIGHT NOW, I'M, I'M KIND OF LIKE RACKING MY BRAIN A LITTLE BIT.

UM, YEAH, I CAN JUMP IN REAL QUICK.

OKAY.

THANKS, JULIE.

I, I WOULD SAY AS WE'RE, AS WE'RE GETTING FEEDBACK, YOU KNOW, THE PEOPLE WHO COME FORWARD OR AND HAVE SUCH OFTEN IN VERY DESPERATE NEED, UM, HAVE A LOT OF IMMEDIATE NEEDS.

AND SO WE'RE HEARING PRIMARILY ABOUT HOUSING NEEDS.

HOWEVER, AS CHRIS, WE HEAR REG, WE, I'M SORRY, CAN YOU STILL HEAR ME? WE CAN HEAR YOU.

OKAY.

SORRY.

UM, AS CHRIS MENTIONED EARLIER, WE HEAR SO REGULARLY THAT WE NEED A MORE ACCESSIBLE PROCESS.

AND I'D SAY THAT'S WHERE THIS FITS MOST IS PEOPLE SAYING, STOP SENDING ME QR CODES OR MAKE IT EASIER FOR ME TO CONNECT FROM MY, FROM MY DEVICE.

SO WE GET ALL OVER THE BOARD IN TERMS OF, YES, GIVE US MORE DIGITAL ACCESS, AND ALSO, UM, PLEASE, CAN WE GET PAPER COPIES? CAN WE, UH, CAN YOU COME TO US IN PERSON? SO, UM, I DUNNO IF THAT EXACTLY ANSWERS YOUR QUESTION, BUT I WOULD SAY WE HEAR KINDA A LITTLE BIT OF EVERYTHING IN TERMS OF YES, MORE DIGITAL, NO, PLEASE, LESS DIGITAL, WHICH OF COURSE MEANS WE DO NEED TO HELP, UH, UH, FOLKS WHO DON'T HAVE ACCESS.

UM, SO WE'RE TRYING TO, I THINK WE'RE TRYING TO, UH, APPROACH IT FROM BOTH ANGLES TO SAY, YEAH, HOW DO WORK WITH ORGANIZATIONS TO MAKE SURE THAT PEOPLE IN THEIR HOMES HAVE DIGITAL ACCESS, AND ALSO FOR THOSE WHO DON'T HAVE WE REACH THEM.

YEAH, THAT, THAT MAKES SENSE.

UM, AND I KNOW CHRISTIAN HAD MENTIONED THE DIGITAL DIVIDE MAYBE TIED TO THAT.

DID, HAVE YOU BEEN ABLE TO CAPTURE ANY DATA, UM, FROM THESE POPULATIONS THAT YOU'RE SURVEYING ON, LIKE BARRIERS TO INTERNET ACCESS? IS IT ALL AFFORDABILITY, OR ARE THEY JUST FOCUSED ON, UM, THAT THEIR HOUSING, SO, YOU KNOW, CONNECTING TO THE INTERNET AND, AND, AND THOSE ISSUES ARE SORT OF LIKE A SECONDARY PRIORITY? UH, JUST WANNA GET A SENSE OF THAT.

SORRY, I'LL GET SOME BARKING DOCS.

UM, I, WE DON'T HAVE THAT KIND OF DATA.

WE HAVEN'T NECESSARILY ASKED FOR IT AGAIN.

SURE.

UM, AND WHERE WE, CAN I SAY, HOW ARE YOU HEARING THAT WOULD ALSO, UM, JULIE, YOU MAY, YOU MAY TRY GOING, IT'S PRIMARILY FROM OUR LOW INCOME, UM, FOLKS WHO MM-HMM.

WHO DON'T HAVE IT, BECAUSE THEY, YEAH.

I THINK THERE'S SOME, SOME ASSUMPTIONS WE CAN MAKE, BUT WE DON'T ASK SPECIFICALLY WHAT ARE THE BARRIERS.

GOT IT.

UNDERSTOOD.

OKAY.

UH, AND JULIE, YOU, YOU WERE SORT OF CUTTING OUT, SO YOU MAY WANT TO CONSIDER, UH, TURNING OFF YOUR CAMERA SO WE CAN HEAR YOU.

UH, I'LL OPEN IT UP TO, TO SOME OF THE OTHER, UH, COMMISSIONERS.

I KNOW COMMISSIONER DES GUPTA IN THE ROOM, UH, MAY HAVE SOME QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS.

I'LL TURN IT OVER TO HIM.

UH, MIA, THANK YOU FOR ENLIGHTENING PRESENTATION.

THERE'S A LOT OF INFORMATION HERE, UH, SPECIFIC TO YOUR, UH, SLIDE NUMBER 11.

I HAVE A COUPLE OF QUESTIONS.

I MADE NOTES AS I WENT ALONG.

SO IN SLIDE NUMBER 11, YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT HOUSING NEEDS AND OTHER NEEDS.

SO UNDER OTHER NEEDS, YOU KNOW, WE ARE, WE ARE TALKING ABOUT DIGITAL CONNECTIVITY.

WHY ISN'T CONNECTIVITY ONE OF THOSE OTHER NEEDS? IN MY MIND, IF IT'S NOT WRITTEN DOWN, IT DOESN'T EXIST .

SO, YEAH, I MEAN, I THINK IT'S A GREAT QUESTION.

I THINK THAT THESE CONVERSATIONS KIND OF HIGHLIGHT THAT WHEN WE ARE TALKING ABOUT SUCH, YOU KNOW, WE'RE HAVING CONVERSATIONS WITH FOLKS ABOUT THESE SUCH LIKE, YOU KNOW, THAT THEIR MINDS ARE JUST, THAT THEIR MIND IS ON HOUSING.

HOW AM I GONNA GET, YOU KNOW, LIKE, YOU KNOW, HOW AM I GONNA HAVE A ROOF OVER MY HEAD TOMORROW? YOU KNOW, WE'RE WORKING WITH A LOT OF HOMELESS MM-HMM.

.

UM, I THINK WE COULD PROBABLY DO A MUCH BETTER JOB OF, YOU KNOW, MAKING SURE TO KEEP THE, YOU KNOW, DIGITAL DIVIDE QUESTION, YOU KNOW, ON PEOPLE'S MINDS AND KIND OF ON, ON PAPER.

BUT, UM, LIKE JULIE SAID, IT, IT DEFINITELY, IT, IT JUST, IT, IT JUST DOESN'T, I THINK THERE'S BEEN SUCH A, A, A INTENTIONAL, UM, EFFORT FROM HUD FOR US TO BE FOCUSING ON THIS BECAUSE WHEN WE'RE FOCUSING, UH, WHEN WE'RE LISTENING TO PEOPLE ON THE GROUND, IT'S JUST, IT JUST DOESN'T ALWAYS, OR OFTEN DOESN'T REALLY COME UP BECAUSE THEY'RE SO FOCUSED ON, AGAIN, YOU KNOW, RENT REALLY CORE NEEDS.

YEAH.

SO, SO, YOU KNOW, CARRYING ON, ON THAT, ON, ON THAT WAVELENGTH, UH, I WONDER IF DIGITAL CONNECTIVITY WOULDN'T BE A MEANS TO THE

[00:45:01]

END IN SOLVING SOME OF THEIR CRISES.

MM-HMM.

, EVEN FOR THE HOMELESS.

I MEAN, IF THEY WERE BETTER CONNECTED, IF THEY KNEW WHERE TO GET HELP, ET CETERA, WOULDN'T THAT BE A SOLUTION TO THE PROBLEM? PART OF THE SOLUTION TO THE PROBLEM? CHRIS, DO YOU MIND IF I JUMP IN? YEAH, YEAH, YEAH.

GO FOR IT.

GO.

GREAT.

UM, FIRST OFF, THANK YOU FOR THAT QUESTION.

THAT'S EXACTLY THE TYPE OF THINKING THAT WE, THAT WE'RE LOOKING FOR IN THESE MEETINGS.

UM, THE, UH, UH, OUTSIDE THE BOX SOLUTIONS, UH, AND, AND, UH, CROSS CONNECTIVITY OVERLAPPING, UH, EXPERTISE, THAT'S HOW WE'RE GOING TO FIND SOLUTIONS TO THESE INTRACTABLE PROBLEMS. MM-HMM.

.

UM, I THINK THAT IT'S REALLY IMPORTANT TO, TO POINT OUT THAT, UM, UH, CHRIS AND JULIE HAVE BEEN, UH, HAVE BEEN DOING THE YEOMAN'S WORK OF THIS, UH, FOR THE LAST SIX MONTHS, UH, REALLY REACHING OUT TO COMMITTEES THAT WE'VE NEVER TALKED TO AND, UH, UM, TALKING TO PEOPLE AND HEARING, UH, THINGS THAT, THAT WE'VE BEEN, UH, UM, WE HAVEN'T HAD TIME TO GO OUT AND ASK THE QUESTIONS ABOUT.

MM-HMM.

.

UM, SO I THINK THAT THIS IS A FANTASTIC OPPORTUNITY IN THIS FIVE YEAR CONSOLIDATED PLAN, UM, ENDEAVOR, UH, TO REALLY TAKE THAT TYPE OF INFORMATION, UH, AND, AND, UM, USE IT AS WE GO, AS WE MOVE FORWARD.

NOT JUST WITH OUR FEDERALLY FEDERAL FUNDING, BUT WITH OUR, OUR LOCAL FUNDS, WITH OUR GEO BONDS, WITH EVERYTHING THAT WE, THAT WE DO WITH THE HOUSING DEPARTMENT.

JUST MAKING SURE THAT WE CONSIDER THESE THINGS, UM, AND KEEP IT PART OF THE CONVERSATION.

MM-HMM.

.

SO I, I, I THINK THAT THE FACT THAT WE'RE TALKING ABOUT IT IS THE GOAL OF, OF, UH, THIS OUTREACH THAT, UH, CHRIS AND JULIE AND I HAVE BEEN, HAVE BEEN WORKING ON.

SO, UH, THANK YOU FOR THAT.

AND I HOPE THAT WE CAN CONTINUE THAT CONVERSATION.

OKAY.

MAY I ASK A COUPLE MORE QUICK ONES? UH, IN SLIDE 17, YOU'VE GIVEN A DISTRIBUTION OF WHO YOU SERVE, AND YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT 3000 HOUSEHOLDS.

IS THAT ALL THE PROBLEM WE HAVE? THAT SOUNDS LIKE AN AWFULLY SMALL NUMBER BECAUSE IN MY MIND, YOU KNOW, I THINK IT'S SOMEWHAT OF A VENN DIAGRAM.

YOU'VE GOT THOSE WHO ARE HOUSING DEPRIVED, THOSE THAT ARE DIGITALLY DEPRIVE DEPRIVED, AND IT'S NOT REALLY ONE AND THE SAME.

AND SHOULDN'T YOU BE TALKING ABOUT REALLY A UNION OF THOSE TWO AREAS AS FAR AS THE, UH, THE POPULATION SERVED? UH, CHRIS, PLEASE CORRECT ME IF I'M WRONG, BUT I BELIEVE THAT THAT IS ONLY A SUBSET OF THE PROGRAMS. UM, ESG IS NOT INCLUDED IN THAT AND SOME OTHER, UM, METRICS.

IS THAT CORRECT? UM, NO.

IT, THERE, THERE ARE, THERE ARE SOME THAT AREN'T INCLUDED.

UM, OKAY.

YEAH.

THERE'S MORE THAT AREN'T INCLUDED IN THE, THE INCOME DEMOGRAPHICS, BUT, UM, YEAH, I, I WAS GONNA HIGHLIGHT THAT, YOU KNOW, JUST, JUST TO HIGHLIGHT THAT THIS IS JUST FEDERAL FUNDING FOR THE HOUSING DEPARTMENT, UM, OUR LOCAL FUNDING AND, AND MAYBE IT'S KINDA, IT'S KINDA UNIQUE SITUATION BEING A CITY LIKE AUSTIN BEING THE 10TH BIGGEST CITY IN THE COUNTRY, BECAUSE FOR A LOT OF COMMUNITIES, THIS FEDERAL FUNDING HERE IS LIKE THEIR BREAD AND BUTTER, RIGHT? MM-HMM.

.

BUT WE HAVE A LOT OF LOCAL FUNDING WHERE WE ACTUALLY SERVE WAY MORE PEOPLE LOCAL.

SO JUST, JUST TO NOT JUST SAY THAT WE CAN'T ALWAYS, YOU KNOW, SERVE MORE AND INCREASE OUR PRODUCTION AND INCREASE OUR GOALS, BUT, UM, YEAH, THAT, I JUST WANTED TO, TO GIVE THAT CONTEXT.

THAT'S JUST FEDERAL FUNDING, NOT LOCAL FUNDING AS WELL.

AND THEN TO GET TO YOUR, THE SECOND PART OF YOUR QUESTION, UM, YEAH, I MEAN, I, I, I'VE NEVER HEARD IT PUT LIKE THAT AS A VENN DIAGRAM, AND THAT'S PROBABLY GONNA STICK WITH ME 'CAUSE THAT'S A REALLY GOOD IMAGE OF DIGITAL CONNECT CONNECTIVITY HOUSING.

UM, AND THERE'S A VENN DIAGRAM THERE, AND THAT'S DEFINITELY SOMETHING THAT, THAT WE'LL, WE'LL PUT IN, PUT INTO, UH, INTO LEADERSHIP AND INTO THE PLAN TO, TO, YOU KNOW, INPUT FROM S GROUP TO BE THINKING OF IT LIKE THAT.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU.

AND I WOULD JUST LIKE TO ECHO THAT, UM, HOW HELPFUL THIS IS TO BE THINKING ABOUT IT THROUGH THIS LENS, BECAUSE AS JAMES, WE'RE THE HOUSING DEPARTMENT AND WE THINK ABOUT THINGS THROUGH HOUSING LENS.

WE'VE TRIED, WE'RE TRYING TO BE REALLY STRATEGIC THIS YEAR, MOVING FORWARD ABOUT NOT SILOING OUR EFFORTS EVEN, YOU KNOW MM-HMM.

WITHIN THE PROGRAMS THAT WE HAVE WITHIN HOUSING.

SO HOW DO WE USE THIS IMPACT ACROSS OUR DEPARTMENT? AND ALSO HOW DO WE USE IT ACROSS THE CITY? SO HOW DO WE KNOW HOW TO WORK BETTER WITH OTHER DEPARTMENTS, UM, FOR THESE VENN DIAGRAM TYPE OF, UM, UH, ISSUES.

AND THEY, THEY'RE ALL CONNECTED, RIGHT? SO REALLY APPRECIATE THIS CONVERSATION, AND I ESPECIALLY WANTED TO SAY, I HEAR YOU ON, WE DIDN'T EVEN HAVE IT LISTED AS A NEED, UH, AS WE WERE GOING THROUGH THOSE NEEDS.

SO, UM, WE WILL, WE WILL ADD IT.

ABSOLUTELY.

AND APPRECIATE ALL THIS FEEDBACK.

YEAH.

ONE, YEAH.

ONE THOUGHT, I'M SORRY.

YEAH.

ONE THOUGHT UNDER OTHER NEEDS, I SEE YOU HAVE UTILITIES

[00:50:01]

HIGHLIGHTED.

I WONDER IF THE DIGITAL DIVIDE PIECE, INTERNET CONNECTIVITY IS PROBABLY BUCKETED WITHIN THAT.

UM, JUST ONE SUGGESTION.

IT, IT MAY, IT MAY MAKE SENSE JUST TO, UM, CAPTURE IT SEPARATELY.

MM-HMM.

.

MM.

YEAH, THAT MAKES A LOT OF SENSE.

YEAH, YEAH, FOR SURE.

YEAH.

I'LL OPEN IT UP TO THE REST OF THE COMMISSIONERS WHO ARE ONLINE GOING ONCE, GOING TWICE.

OKAY.

ONE LAST, I HAVE ONE LAST QUESTION FOR YOU ALL.

HOW CAN OUR, UH, COMMISSION BE THE MOST HELP TO YOU ALL IN THE COMING YEAR? MM-HMM.

, THAT'S A REALLY GREAT QUESTION.

AND I JUST PAUSED BECAUSE YOU SAID IN THE COMING YEAR, I THOUGHT YOU WERE GONNA SAY LIKE, TONIGHT, TONIGHT IN THE COMING YEAR, WHAT, CHOOSE A TIMEFRAME.

YOU COULD CHOOSE WHATEVER TIMEFRAME MAKES THE MOST SENSE.

YEAH, THIS INPUT HAS BEEN GREAT GOING FORWARD.

IF THERE'S ANY MORE INPUT, MAYBE, YOU KNOW, ANY OTHER, OTHER COMMISSIONERS, IF YOU COULD GO TO THAT WWW.SPEAKOFAUSTIN.ORG/MY COMMUNITY NEEDS, UM, AND JUST SEND THAT IN.

OR EVEN IF YOU, YOU KNOW, YOU'RE JUST KIND OF AGREEING WITH WHAT WAS HEARD.

I MEAN, THE MORE INPUT WE GET, THE BETTER.

AND SO, YOU KNOW, BE HERE, YOU KNOW, BE ABLE TO, WHEN WE'RE MAKING DECISIONS, TO BE ABLE TO POINT TO THE INPUT WE GOT, AND, YOU KNOW, THAT'S WHERE WE CAN JUSTIFY IT, RIGHT? SO IF THERE'S MORE INPUT COMING IN ABOUT WHAT THE THEMES Y'ALL ARE TALKING ABOUT TONIGHT, THAT, THAT KIND OF HELPS US TO ADVOCATE FOR THEM.

BUT I THINK I REALLY LOVE THE QUESTION ABOUT GOING FORWARD THROUGH THE YEAR, AND WE, WE DEFINITELY ARE VERY MUCH WANTING TO KIND OF MOVE TOWARDS JUST KIND OF, YOU KNOW, CONTINUAL COMMUNICATION WITH OUR STAKEHOLDER GROUPS AND NOT JUST COMING TO Y'ALL ONCE A YEAR AND CHECKING IN.

AND SO THAT'S SOMETHING THAT WE'RE DEFINITELY BUILDING AND I THINK WE COULD FOLLOW UP WITH YOU ON.

UM, JULIE, DO YOU, I FEEL LIKE YOU MIGHT HAVE SOME THOUGHTS OR, OR JAMIE, IF YOU DO, I'LL LET JULIE GO FIRST IF YOU GOT ANYTHING.

I THINK JUST ECHOING, UM, CHRIS, WHAT YOU SAID, WE'D LOVE TO CONTINUE TO COME BACK AND, UM, MM-HMM, MAYBE BE ABLE TO TEST IDEAS, GET GUIDANCE ON WHO IS IT WE NEED TO BE CONNECTING WITH TO, UM, TO COLLABORATE ON THIS INTERSECTION OF HOUSING, UH, AND, AND THE DIGITAL DIVIDE.

UM, SO REALLY JUST HAVING AN OPEN COMMUNICATION IS REALLY HELPFUL FOR US, AND KNOWING THAT WE'RE HERE THAT WAY TOO.

SO, UM, AGAIN, I'M A COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT SPECIALIST.

I'M HERE TO LISTEN AND HERE TO BE AN ADVOCATE ON THE INSIDE OF OUR DEPARTMENT.

SO I WOULD LOVE, BE IN TOUCH WITH ME, UM, AS OFTEN AS YOU LIKE.

UM, I'M HERE TO LISTEN.

THAT SOUNDS GREAT.

WE'LL TAKE YOU UP ON THAT AND REACH OUT DIRECTLY.

PERFECT.

ALL RIGHT.

WELL, THANK YOU ALL.

WELL, I THINK, I THINK JAMIE MIGHT HAVE HEARD ONE THING, , OR ARE YOU GOOD? NO, I JUST WANTED TO SAY I WANTED TO THANK THEM, UH, THANK THE COMMITTEE FOR, UH, FOR INVITING US AND FOR ALLOWING US TO, TO SPEAK.

AND ONE OF THE BEST PARTS ABOUT BEING PART OF THIS TEAM WITH, UH, JULIE AND CHRIS, IS THAT I GET INTRODUCED TO, UH, THE WHOLE NEW COMMITTEES THAT HAVE EXPERTISE ON THINGS THAT WE'RE THINKING ABOUT.

UM, AND JUST LIKE EVERY OTHER DEPARTMENT IN THE CITY, UH, THE HOUSING DEPARTMENT IS LOOKING AT OUR TECHNOLOGICAL, TECHNOLOGICAL NEEDS AND OUR, UH, RESOURCES.

SO I AM, I'M GONNA BE LOOKING YOU GUYS UP AND REACHING OUT AT SOME POINT.

YEAH.

THE, THE LAST THING I DID WANT TO SAY IS JUST YOU ALL GET, UH, MORE PUBLIC SPEAKERS OR MORE INFORMATION, UH, KIND OF AROUND THE TOPIC THAT WE HEARD EARLIER TONIGHT ABOUT HOW WE CAN, YOU KNOW, BE USING TECHNOLOGY TO ENGAGE IN OUR PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT PROCESS.

YOU KNOW, IT DOESN'T THAT JUST HAVE TO BE CITY COUNCIL, RIGHT? COULD BE, UH, US CITY STAFF.

UM, AND I WAS KIND OF, YOU KNOW, TAKING NOTES ABOUT THIS, UH, POLL POLI, I THINK IT WAS, YOU KNOW, UM, IF Y'ALL, IF Y'ALL WANNA FORWARD THAT TO US, I MEAN, IT'S, IT'S, UH, DEFINITELY, IT'S DEFINITELY HELPFUL JUST INFORMATION THROUGH THE YEAR.

YEAH, ABSOLUTELY.

WE WILL, UM, SEND YOU ALL ANY RELEVANT INFORMATION AFTER, ONCE WE'VE HAD A CHANCE TO MEET WITH, UH, THE OTHER COMMISSION CHAIR.

AWESOME.

THANK Y'ALL SO MUCH.

SOUNDS GREAT.

ALL RIGHT.

THANKS FOR COMING.

THANK YOU ALL.

HAVE A GOOD NIGHT.

YOU TOO.

OKAY.

UM, WE'LL CONTINUE TO CALL THE ITEMS, UM, OUT OF ORDER.

I KNOW ONE OF THE COMMISSIONERS IS HAVING ISSUES WITH THIS CAMERA.

UM, JESSE, DAN WANTS TO

[2. Presentation of the selected applications for the Grant for Technology Opportunities Program [GTOPs] Core 2024 (Jesse Rodriguez – Program Manager, Dan Martinez – Business Process Specailist, Telecommunications and Regulatory Affairs Division of the Financial Services Department, City of Austin) ]

SEE IF YOU ALL ARE READY TO, UH, PRESENT ON THE G TOPS TOPIC.

I'LL TURN IT OVER TO YOU ALL.

[00:55:04]

ALL RIGHTY.

UM, WE'VE GOT A SLIDE DECK GOING FOR Y'ALL, AND WE'LL HAVE IT UP SHORTLY.

UM, BUT YEAH, UM, HELLO EVERYBODY.

UM, FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO I HAVEN'T MET IN PERSON, UH, MY NAME IS DAN MARTINEZ AND I'M ACTUALLY THE LIAISON OF THIS COMMISSION, THE CTTC.

UM, BUT, UH, I KNOW A LOT OF, YOU'RE NEW AND HAVE NOT BEEN EXPOSED TO GTOP S UM, IN YOUR, YOUR TERM SO FAR.

UM, AND I KIND OF WANTED TO, UH, JUST HAVE A BASIC REFRESHER OF WHAT THIS PROGRAM IS AND WHAT THE CTTS ROLE IS WITH THIS PROGRAM, AND HOW, UH, OUR WORK OVERLAPS AND TIES INTO ONE ANOTHER.

NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

SO, YEAH, I'LL BE GOING OVER WHAT GTOP S IS, UM, NEXT SLIDE.

AND JUST TO START A LITTLE MORE ABSTRACTLY, UH, I WANTED TO GO OVER WHAT DIGITAL INCLUSION IS.

UM, DIGITAL INCLUSION IS BASICALLY, UH, THE, THE SORT OF ACT OF BRINGING TOGETHER A COMMUNITY AND MAKING SURE THAT NOBODY IS LEFT OUT OF THE DIGITAL ASPECTS OF OUR LIFE.

UM, YOU KNOW, AS TIME GOES ON, AND SINCE THE, UH, COVID PANDEMIC, UH, THE WORLD HAS BEEN, UH, MOVING TOWARDS MORE, UH, TECHNOLOGY FOCUSED COMMUNICATIONS, UM, YOU CAN SEE THAT IN SCHOOL IN OUR JOBS, AS WELL AS JUST THE WAY THAT WE COMMUNICATE WITH ONE ANOTHER OR FRIENDS AND FAMILIES.

UM, AND WE WANNA MAKE SURE THAT NOBODY IS LEFT OUT OF THAT ADVANCEMENT BECAUSE WITHOUT THESE TOOLS NOWADAYS, IT'S KIND OF HARD TO PARTICIPATE, UH, IN OUR SOCIETY AND ALMOST ANY ASPECT OF THAT, WHETHER IT'S LIKE MEDICAL GOVERNMENT, UM, OR BANKING.

UM, BUT YES, NEXT SLIDE.

AND, UH, G OS IS OUR GRANT FOR TECHNOLOGY OPPORTUNITIES PROGRAM, AND WHICH WAS FOUNDED ON THIS VISION OF A COMMUNITY WHERE EVERYBODY'S ABLE TO PARTICIPATE IN EVERY PART OF SOCIETY THAT DOES HAVE A MORE ONLINE AND DIGITAL FOCUS.

UM, AND OUR GOAL AT THE TECHNOLOGY AND RE REGULATORY AFFAIRS DIVISION, UM, IS TO CREATE, UH, AN AUSTIN COMMUNITY THAT IS VERY WELL, UH, DIGITALLY AND, UH, DIGITALLY CONNECTED.

AND THIS IS, AND IT'S EQUITABLE FOR ALL, UM, NO ONE'S LEFT BEHIND.

UM, AND WE GO ABOUT THAT IN THREE MAIN WAYS THROUGH OUR, UH, GRANTFORD TECHNOLOGY OPPORTUNITIES PROGRAM.

UM, ARE THREE MAIN MISSIONS THAT WE TRY TO, UH, TO FOCUS OUR, UH, THESE GRANTS AROUND, UH, THESE AWARDS AROUND IS, UH, THE INCREASE OF DIGITAL AND COMMUNICATIONS TECHNOLOGY DEVICES.

SO GETTING TABLETS, LAPTOPS, PHONES OUT INTO THE COMMUNITY AT, UH, LOW TO NO COST, UM, INCREASING KNOWLEDGE AND SKILLS OF DIGITAL AND COMMUNICATIONS TECHNOLOGY, UM, THAT CAN GO, UH, THAT CAN VARY FROM LOW SKILL, JUST TEACHING SOMEBODY HOW TO ACCESS THEIR MEDICAL HEALTH PORTAL TO VERY, UH, LARGER SKILLSET LIKE HOW TO USE WORK TOOLS LIKE EXCEL OR, UH, CAD, A BUILDER.

UM, AND THEN FINALLY, OUR OTHER MISSION IS TO INCREASE ACCESS AND USAGE TO THE INTERNET ALSO AT LOW OR, UH, NO COST TO THOSE WHO NEED IT.

NEXT SLIDE.

AND SO THE GRANT FOR TECHNOLOGY OPPORTUNITIES PROGRAM WAS BORN, UM, I WANNA BELIEVE IT'S ABOUT 20 YEARS OLD AT THIS POINT.

UM, AND WE'VE BEEN DOING THIS, UH, UH, IN THE PAST THIS PROGRAM HAD 20,002, UH, $200,000 OF, OF FINANCES TO SHARE WITHIN THE COMMUNITY.

AND WE ONLY HAD ONE PATHWAY, WHICH IS OUR MAIN ONE, GTOP S CORE.

UM, BUT THANKS TO THE WORK OF THE CTTC BACK IN 2020, THERE WAS A RECOMMENDATION THAT WAS, UH, PASSED THAT RAISED THE FUNDING FROM 200,000 TO 400,000, AND WE WERE ABLE TO CREATE, UH, TWO ADDITIONAL PATHWAYS AS A RESULT OF THAT.

UM, AND AS YOU CAN SEE HERE, WE HAVE THE THREE PRIMARY PATHWAYS.

UH, GT OS SCORE IS THE ONE THAT WE'LL BE TALKING ABOUT TODAY, THE ONE THAT WE JUST WRAPPED UP AND ARE CURRENTLY IN THE PROCESS OF CONTRACTING.

UM, BUT WE ALSO HAVE GTOP S CAPACITY AND GTOP S MINI, UH, GTOP S CAPACITY.

JUST TO SPEAK ON IT REALLY QUICKLY, IS, UH, MORE OF A, AS THE NAME IMPLIES, A CAPACITY BUILDING GRANT, UM, MA MADE TO HELP, UH, ORGANIZATIONS THAT ARE ALREADY SERVICING THE COMMUNITY, THE COMMUNITY'S DIGITAL EQUITY NEEDS, AND HELPING THEM SORT OF FLESH OUT, UH, THEIR, THEIR PROGRAMS AND THEIR PRACTICES AND HELPING THEM, UH, HELPING SMALLER ORGANIZATIONS, UH, THOSE, UH, WITH LESS THAN 1 MILLION, $500,000 OF ANNUAL REVENUES, HELPING THEM KIND OF GET THAT GRASSROOTS FUNDING AND, UH, BE ABLE TO PARTICIPATE IN THAT WORK MORE FLUIDLY.

UM, AND MANY IS MORE, UH, DIRECTED TOWARDS ACTUALLY HELPING DIRECT SERVICE, UM, TO CLIENTS IN NEED OF DIGITAL EQUITY TOOLS.

UM, BUT IT'S A SMALLER GRANT MADE TO ALSO FLESH OUT, UM, ALREADY EXISTING DIGITAL EQUITY PROGRAMS. UM, BUT GTOP S CORE IS OUR LARGEST PATHWAY.

IT HAS A AWARD RANGE BETWEEN 10,030 $5,000.

UM, AND THIS IS MADE TO EITHER, UM, HELP SUPPORT THOSE ALREADY PRE-EXISTING, UH, DIGITAL EQUITY PROGRAMS,

[01:00:01]

OR HELP GET SOME OFF THE GROUND, UM, WITH, UH, WHAT IS SORT OF MATCH FUNDING, UH, C MATCH SEED FUNDING.

UM, AND THIS YEAR WE ACTUALLY HAD AN INCREASE TO ALL OF THESE PATHWAYS.

UM, SO G TOPS CORE WENT FROM, I WANNA SAY, 300,000, CORRECT, TO 315,000 2 75, 2 70 5,000 TO THREE 15,000, UH, JUST DUE TO AN, UH, SURPLUS OF FUNDS THAT WE HAD TO REALLOCATE, UH, DUE TO THE CLOSURE OF THE A CP PROGRAM.

UM, BUT I'LL GO MORE INTO GTOP S CORE.

CAN YOU HIT THE NEXT SLIDE AND YEAH, I, I KIND OF HIT THESE ON <