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UM,

[00:00:03]

UM,

[ Call to Order]

AND, UH, I'D LIKE TO FIRST APOLOGIZE FOR THE TECHNICAL DIFFICULTIES, UH, THAT I'M APPARENTLY HAVING THAT, UH, SEEM TO HAVE CAUSED, OR THAT I'VE SEEM TO BE HAVING, THAT HAVE CAUSED MY TARDINESS.

UM, AND, UH, YOU KNOW, ALONGSIDE THAT APOLOGY, UM, UH, I WOULD JUST LIKE TO, UH, THANK YOU BOTH FOR, UH, SELECTING, UH, KAREN PAPA AS OUR HIGH CHAIR AND, UH, MYSELF, UH, AS THE CHAIR OF THIS COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT COMMISSION.

UH, THE PURPOSE OF WHICH, UH, OF THE, OF THIS BOARD, UH, IS WHICH YOU ADVISE THE COUNCIL IN THE DEVELOPMENT AND IMPLEMENTATION OF PROGRAMS DESIGNED TO SERVE THE POOR AND THE COMMUNITY AT LARGE, WITH AN EMPHASIS ON FEDERALLY FUNDED PROGRAMS. UM, AND, YOU KNOW, WITH THAT CALL TO ORDER, I WOULD LIKE TO TAKE A MOMENT, UH, AGAIN, TO RECOGNIZE, UH, CHAIR DECIBEL INTO SERVICE, UH, TO THIS CON, UH, COMMISSION.

UH, AND WHAT I FEEL LIKE IS IN MY TIME AT THE COMMISSION HAS BEEN BRILLIANT STEWARDSHIP, I THINK A TIME OF VERY, VERY, UH, I THINK AT FIRST THAT WAS WELL FOUNDED BY A LOT OF PASSION FOR, FROM COMMUNITY MEMBERS ON ALL SIDES, UH, INTO A PLACE WHERE I FEEL LIKE A CHAIR, UH, HAS TAKEN US AROUND THE CORNER, UH, TO REALLY PUT A FINE POINT ON HOW THE COMMISSION, UH, CAN LEVERAGE OUR COLLECTIVE, UH, AND COMMON BELIEF, UH, TO BE ABLE TO MOVE FORWARD, UH, AN AGENDA THAT SUPPORTS, UH, THOSE WERE THE MOST VULNERABLE IN OUR COMMUNITY AND WHOSE VOICES NEED TO BE ELEVATED MOST.

SO, SO THANK YOU, UH, SHARED, UM, WITH, UH, WITH THAT BEING SAID, UH, THE FIRST ITEM IS CITIZEN COMMUNICATION.

IN MY UNDERSTANDING, LISA, THAT WE DON'T HAVE ANY CITIZENS SIGNED UP TO SPEAK, IS THAT CORRECT? AND YOU MAY BE MUTED.

YES, THAT IS CORRECT.

OKAY, BRILLIANT.

UH, AND SO

[1. APPROVAL OF MINUTES]

THE NEXT ITEM OF BUSINESS WOULD BE APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES.

EVERYBODY COULD PLEASE REFERENCE THE MINUTES, UH, IN, IN THE MEETING PACKET, UH, TAKE A MINUTE TO LOOK THEM OVER IF YOU DIDN'T USE THE MINUTES THAT, UH, I WAS LATE TO GETTING INTO THE MEETING TO LOOK THOSE MINUTES OVER, UH, LET'S JUST TAKE A, ANOTHER QUICK MINUTE OR TWO TO GLANCE, AND I WOULD LOVE TO ENTERTAIN AT THAT POINT, A MOTION TO APPROVE MOVE APPROVAL.

WE HAVE A MOTION TO APPROVE FROM VICE CHAIR PUFF.

AND, UH, DO WE HAVE A SECOND? UH, AND, UH, UH, THAT WAS FROM COMMISSIONER WOODS.

YES.

OKAY.

AND SO ALL IN FAVOR OF APPROVING THE MINUTES, UH, FROM, UH, THE OCTOBER 13TH MEETING, PLEASE SAY, HI, HI COMMISSIONER FROM ABS EYES ALL AROUND, UH, ANY NAMES.

OKAY.

AND ANY ABSTENTIONS, PLEASE COMMISSIONER THAT ALL ABSTAINS IN ABSENCE.

OKAY.

THANK YOU.

UH, AND SO IT WILL BE NOTED THAT WE HAVE EYES FROM EVERY COMMISSIONER AND ATTENDANCE, UH, BARRING COMMISSIONER ROSATO WHO ABSTAINED.

AND THAT BRINGS US TO OUR NEXT AGENDA ITEM,

[2. COMMUNITY SERVICES BLOCK GRANT (CSBG)]

WHICH IS THE COMMUNITY SERVICES BLOCK GRANT, THE CSBG ROUTINE, UH, AND, UH, OUR DEAR FRIEND ON HIS SUMMIT ON IT WAS GOING TO JOIN US, UH, WHO WAS THE MANAGER OF THE NEIGHBORHOOD SERVICES, UH, TO OFFER UP A MONTHLY BRIEFING ON HIM.

ALL RIGHT, GOOD EVENING, EVERYONE.

THANK YOU FOR HAVING ME HERE, AS YOU KNOW, I JUST WANT TO REMIND YOU THAT WE AT THE NEIGHBORHOOD CENTER, THE CBC COMMUNITY SERVICES BLOCK GRANT FUNDS TO HELP PEOPLE WHO ARE POOR INELIGIBLE SERVICES, YOU PROVIDE BASIC NEEDS SERVICES, PREVENTIVE, HEALTH MANAGEMENT, AND EMPLOYMENT SUPPORT.

SINCE COVID BEGAN, BE PRETTY MUCH FOCUSED ON THE, UM, RENT AND UTILITY ASSISTANCE AND THE EMERGENCY FOOD, UM, SERVICES TO HELP PEOPLE WHO ARE IN NEED OF THOSE TWO THINGS.

UM, WE ALSO HAVE BEEN THIS PAST, UH, ONE ON SOME THANKSGIVING AND, UM, UM, NOVEMBER EVENTS, WHICH I'LL, AND YOU GUYS KNOW MORE ABOUT IT.

THE DECEMBER MEETING WE'RE EXCITED

[00:05:01]

ABOUT THAT BRINGS A SENSE OF NORMALCY, UM, A LITTLE BIT.

UM, WE GET TO ACTUALLY INTERACT A LITTLE MORE WITH OUR COMMUNITY, HAVE BEEN ABLE TO SEND OUR, UH, THROUGH DRIVE-THROUGH.

UH, WE ARE ON TRACK TO EXPEND OUR FUNDS WITH THIS.

UH, HERE YOU CAN MOVE TO NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

AS YOU CAN SEE FROM THIS IT'S KIND OF SHRUNK, UH, FROM THE PREVIOUS REPORTS BEFORE COVID, UH, MOST OF OUR, UH, WORK HAS BEEN IN HELPING PEOPLE AVOID EVICTION.

I REMIND YOU, OUR TARGET FOR THE YEAR WAS 500, UH, THAT CHANGED DRAMATICALLY WHEN COVID HIT.

AND THEN WE'VE GOT SOME EXTRA FUNDS, WHICH I WILL TALK TO YOU ABOUT THE NEXT PRESENTATION.

UH, WE HAVE TO REVISE OUR TARGET WITH THE STATE, UH, TO 1200.

AND WE CURRENTLY ARE ABOUT 915.

I WAS SOLD.

SO YOU HAVE A WAY TO EVICTION DUE TO OUR, UH, RENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM.

UH, WE ALSO DO A LOT OF FOOD DISTRIBUTION, SO WE PIVOTED EARLY ON TO DOING EMERGENCY FOR DELIVERY.

UH, WE DEMOBILIZED THAT OPERATION TO FOCUS ON THE RENT AND UTILITY ASSISTANCE.

UH, BUT NOW I HAVE STOOD UP FOR THE LAST COUPLE OF MONTHS, UH, CURBSIDE FOOD PANTRY, AND ALSO HELP WITH THE COLLABORATION OF CENTRAL TEXAS FOOD BANK AT A COUPLE OF THEIR MOBILE FOOD PANTRY EVENTS THAT I'D PAID REALLY MIDDLE SCHOOL, UH, DOVE SPRINGS IN A CORNER ROBERTS.

AND NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

ALL RIGHT.

UH, NUMBER TWO, WANT TO GIVE YOU AN UPDATE ON THE CDC DOMINATION SELECTION FOR THE ST JOHN'S SEAT THAT I BECAME VACANT ABOUT A MONTH AGO? UH, WE HAVE, UM, KENDRA GARRETT WILL BE THE NEW CDC COMMISSIONER REPRESENTING THE ST JOHN GEOGRAPHIC AREA.

SO WE WILL BE EXCITED TO HAVE HER JOIN YOUR GROUP.

UM, WE ARE ALSO WORKING ON, UH, THE ROSE SIDE.

I GOSA BLACK CLAN NEIGHBORHOOD, UH, NOMINATION SELECTION, UH, ELECTION.

AND WE HOPE TO BE ABLE TO DO THAT IN THE NEXT, HOPEFULLY BEFORE THE END OF THE YEAR.

UM, WE'RE RUNNING INTO SOME BARRIERS WITH THE VIRTUAL SIDE OF THINGS IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION, UM, BUT WE'RE GONNA NEED TO REALLY SUPPORT THEM IN THAT EFFORT.

UH, NUMBER THREE, NEIGHBORHOOD SERVICES, UM, I MENTIONED EARLIER WERE BASICALLY CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC.

ALL OUR SERVICES ARE VIRTUAL AND ON THE PHONE.

UM, WE DO PROVIDE THE PANTRY CURBSIDE BY APPOINTMENT AND PROCESSING EMERGENCY RENTAL AND UTILITY ASSISTANCE APPLICATIONS.

THAT'S SOMETHING THAT I'LL REPORT A LITTLE BIT ON NEXT MONTH IS THAT WE HAVE HAD SOME OF OUR NURSES TO DO, UM, SOME FLU CLINICS, A DRIVE-THROUGH AND A COUPLE OF OUR CENTERS.

AND WE HOPE TO DO A COUPLE MORE.

I KNOW THE BIGGER PICTURE APH IS ALSO VERY ACTIVE IN DOING EVENTS AROUND TOWN.

ON NUMBER FOUR, THE CARES ACT CSBG FUNDING, MORE PROGRESS HAS BEEN MADE.

UH, WE WILL LAUNCH THIS PROGRAM NEXT MONDAY, UM, WITH COLLABORATION WITH THE AUSTIN AREA, URBAN LEAGUE, WHO WILL BE ASSISTING US WITH PAYMENTS TO LANDLORDS.

SO WE'RE EXCITED ABOUT THAT.

UH, WE'VE GOT ALMOST $1.5 MILLION, UH, FOR THAT ENDEAVOR AND WE ARE LOOKING FORWARD TO HELPING EVEN MORE FOLKS, UM, WITH RENT ASSISTANCE IN THE FOLLOWING EIGHT MONTHS, RIGHT? NUMBER FIVE, THE DISCRETIONARY FUNDING.

WE RECEIVED A LITTLE BIT OF EXTRA FUNDING FROM THE STATE, UM, THIS SUMMER.

AND WE WERE ABLE TO EXPEND THAT, UM, COUPLE OF MONTHS AGO, WE WERE ABLE TO ASSIST IF YOU NEED INDIVIDUAL SUBWAY EVICTION WITH THOSE FUNDS.

AND OUR PARTNER IN THE COMMUNITY WAS EASTER SEALS CENTRAL, AND NUMBER SIX, AUSTIN ENERGY PLUS ONE PROGRAM CONTINUED TO USE THE FUNDING THAT THEY AWARD US, UH, TO HELP PEOPLE PAY THEIR UTILITY BILLS AT OUR SIX NEIGHBORHOOD CENTERS.

AGAIN, THIS IS ALL DONE VIRTUALLY ON THE PHONE AND WE JUST RECEIVED, I THINK, ANOTHER $37,000 FOR THIS NEXT FISCAL YEAR.

UH, WE LOOK FORWARD TO START EXPANDING THAT AS WELL.

AND NEXT WEEK I THINK THAT IS THE LAST SLIDE.

UM, GREAT.

UH, UH, UH, IS THAT, THAT'S THE FINAL PART OF THE PRESENTATION? UH, YES.

[00:10:01]

SORRY ABOUT THAT.

WE USED TO GIVE UPDATES ON TOP OF US AT THE END OF THAT PRESENTATION, BUT NOW THEY'RE OFFICIALLY DONE.

I THINK THE VIDEO WENT OUT TODAY TO THE COMMUNITY.

I WILL CHECK IT OUT IF YOU GUYS CAN.

IT'S A BEAUTIFUL VIDEO ON THE NEW FACILITY WITH A LOT OF GOOD PICTURES AND VIDEO OF THE MAYOR AND STAFF AND COMMUNITY MEMBERS CELEBRATING SORT OF A QUOTE UNQUOTE VIRTUAL GRAND OPENING.

AND WE ARE FULLY STAFFED AT MONTOPOLIS.

UH, WE HAVE SEVEN NEIGHBORHOOD CENTER STAFF, UM, AND IN CRANE TO BE ABLE TO HELP FOLKS WITH THE CURBSIDE FOOD PANTRY AND ALSO THE RENT AND UTILITY ASSISTANCE PROGRAM.

EXCELLENT.

UH, THAT'S GREAT TO HEAR, AND IT'S BEEN A WONDERFUL TO FOLLOW, UH, YOU ALL PROGRESS, UH, ON THE CENTER.

I'M SURE THAT, UH, THE COMMISSIONERS, UH, WILL HAVE SOME QUESTIONS AND COMMENTARY AROUND THE PRESENTATION I, FOR ONE WITH, UH, WITH USE, ACTUALLY ENDING WITH THE SUCCESS STORY.

UH, AND, UH, MAYBE WE CAN ASK YOU ABOUT THAT AS WE GO.

I DO WANT TO INTERJECT FOR A MOMENT BEFORE WE GO TO QUESTIONS, UH, AND MAKE SURE WE GET TO THIS PARTICULAR ISSUE BEFORE I BELIEVE COMMISSIONER TALER MIGHT HAVE TO LEAVE.

UM, AND LISA, I BELIEVE THAT THERE IS A SCHEDULING, UH, CONCERN THAT WE NEED TO DISCUSS.

YES.

AND IT'S ABOUT THE DECEMBER MEETING.

THERE IS THE NEED FOR A PUBLIC HEARING TO BE HELD PRIOR TO COUNCIL'S, UH, DECEMBER 10TH MEETING, WE GOT ONE FROM DECEMBER 8TH, WHICH WAS OUR ORIGINAL DATE.

AND SO I THOUGHT THE MOST CONVENIENT ONE WOULD BE THE 17TH, THE NEXT BEST DATE.

AND EVERYBODY HAS SENT ME EX ACCEPTANCE, YOU KNOW, PINGS FOR THAT.

AND THEN I LEARNED THAT, NO, WE NEED TO DO IT EARLIER.

SO WE'RE LOOKING AT DECEMBER 4TH, WHICH IS THE ONLY ALTERNATIVE, AND IT'S THE MORNING SLOT, WHICH WOULD BE 8:00 AM TO NOON.

HOWEVER, YOU DON'T HAVE TO START AT 8:00 AM.

YOU COULD START AT NINE, NINE 30, 10 WITH A HARD STOP AT NOON, AND THAT'S FRIDAY THE FOURTH.

SO I WAS HOPING TO TAKE A POLL AND SEE IF FOLKS COULD ACTUALLY DO THAT.

OKAY.

AND I'M GUESSING THAT THERE ARE NO OTHER COMMISSIONS THAT ARE LOWER ON THE TOTEM POLE THAT WE MIGHT BE ABLE TO BUMP FOR THE OTHER DAY.

I DIDN'T, I ACTUALLY POSED THAT QUESTION.

I'M ASSUMING SO MUCH.

YEAH, WELL, I, IF WE COULD BYPASS MY FAILED ATTEMPT AT HUMOR, UM, COMMITTED FISSURES AND THE VICE CHAIR WOULD PLEASE, UH, TAKE A MOMENT TO SINK OUR SWATCHES OR TAKE A LOOK AT OUR CALENDAR, UH, TO SEE IF DECEMBER 4TH, SOMETIME IN THE AM WOULD BE, UH, TO BE ABLE TO HAVE A MEETING.

OKAY.

WHAT IS IT THAT WE NEED TO HAVE A PUBLIC HEARING? WHAT'S IT ON? I WAS JUST TRYING TO NAVIGATE TO, UM, SORRY FOR THE DELAY.

I THINK THAT, UM, GIVEN THE TECHNICAL ISSUES, I DON'T HAVE MY FINGERS ON THE AGENDA ITEM THAT NEEDS TO BE BROUGHT FORWARD, ERICA OFF THE TOP OF YOUR HEAD.

DO YOU KNOW? YEAH.

UM, THIS IS ERICA LEEK, HOUSING AND PLANNING DEPARTMENT OF THE CITY HAS RECEIVED ADDITIONAL FUNDING FOR COVID RELATED ACTIVITIES, UM, FOR CDBG CORONA VIRUS OR LEAVE.

UM, AND SO THE PUBLIC HEARING WOULD BE ON, ON THE USE OF THOSE FUNDS.

GREAT, MR. CHAIR, I'M AVAILABLE THAT MORNING AT ANY TIME.

THANK YOU, VICE CHAIR.

UH, I'M ALSO AVAILABLE.

UH, CAN WE GET A ROLL CALL? I'LL JUST CALL YOU ALL AS I SEE YOU, UH, ON MY SCREEN HERE, EXCUSE ME, COMMISSIONER DECIBEL.

I'M AVAILABLE, UH, COMMISSIONER WOODS.

I'M AVAILABLE.

CAN YOU REPEAT WHAT TIME? ON DECEMBER THE FOURTH? IT WOULD BE SOMETIME FROM EIGHT TO NOON.

UH, AND IT SEEMS LIKE WE HAVE OPEN AVAILABILITY FROM THE PREVIOUS THREE, UH, PREVIOUS TWO COMMISSIONERS AND VICE CHAIR.

SO IF YOU WANT TO SPECIFY IT OR WE'D BE HAPPY TO GO WITH IT.

I AM AVAILABLE BEFORE 10 45 IF NEEDED.

I CAN MAKE ARRANGEMENTS.

[00:15:02]

OKAY.

SO RIGHT NOW WE HAVE, IT LOOKS LIKE, UH, I'VE GOT TO GO AHEAD AND FLOAT NINE TO 10, UNLESS SOMEBODY SUGGESTS SOMETHING FINER, UH, COMMISSIONER YOUNG IS AVAILABLE.

UH, AND LET'S SEE.

AND COMMISSIONER TOLLIVER, UH, YOU'VE CALLED IN, UH, ARE YOU AVAILABLE ON DECEMBER 4TH, FRIDAY MORNING AT 9:00 AM.

OKAY.

UH, I'M NOT ABLE TO HEAR YOU COMMISSIONER OLIVER, AND I DON'T KNOW.

UM, IF OVER, UH, IF MAYBE TEXAS CITY HALL ARE ABLE TO HEAR A COMMISSIONER TELLER, I DO HEAR YOUR VOICE, BUT IF IT'S COMING THROUGH, THERE YOU GO.

CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW? I PUT YOU ON THE SPEAKER.

YES, SIR.

MR. KELLER, I CAN HEAR YOU.

YES.

OKAY.

DECEMBER THE FOURTH IS ALL RIGHT WITH ME.

THANK YOU AND COMMISSIONER.

UH, LET'S SEE, UH, COMMISSIONER SLOAN.

UH, HOW WOULD THAT WORK FOR YOU? UH, DECEMBER 4TH AT 9:00 AM.

THAT WORKS FOR ME.

THANK YOU SO MUCH, COMMISSIONER LOUIE UNAVAILABLE.

OKAY.

IS THERE ANY TIME ON DECEMBER 4TH IN THAT WINDOW THAT YOU WOULD BE AVAILABLE? YEAH, I WORK IN PERSON MONDAY THROUGH FRIDAY EIGHT TO FIVE O'CLOCK.

SO I'M ONLY AVAILABLE AFTER FIVE DURING THE WEEK.

I UNDERSTAND THAT.

AND I CAN EMPATHIZE.

I'M REALLY, REALLY SORRY ABOUT THAT.

UH, UH, LET'S, UH, DEFINITELY TRY TO AVOID THIS IN THE FUTURE AND I CAN ASSURE YOU THAT WE'LL DO OUR BEST TO ENSURE THAT OUR MEETINGS ARE HAPPENING AT TYPICALLY OCCURRING TIME.

UM, THANK YOU FOR YOUR RESILIENCE, AND I'M REALLY SORRY THAT, THAT YOU WON'T BE ABLE TO MAKE THAT MEETING AND COMMISSIONER FIDELIS.

UH, I, WELL, I WOULD SAY MAYBE, UH, NOT DEFINITELY.

I HAVE TO ARRANGE WITH WORK AS WELL FOR THAT.

SO MAYBE ON THAT.

UM, SO IT LOOKED LIKE, UH, AT 9:00 AM ON FRIDAY, DECEMBER 4TH, WE HAVE COMMISSIONER SLOW AND AVAILABLE COMMISSIONER, UH, UH, YOUNG AVAILABLE, UH, COMMISSIONER OBERTO AVAILABLE, VICE CHAIR, POP IS AVAILABLE.

COMMISSIONER WOODS IS AVAILABLE, COMMISSIONER DESOLTEL IS AVAILABLE.

AND, UH, I ALSO, UH, UH, CHAIRMAN 20 I'M AVAILABLE, UM, WITH THAT.

AND AS WELL AS COMMISSIONER TOLERANT, FORGIVE ME.

I DON'T SEE YOU ON THE, ON THE LITTLE SQUARES, UH, UH, THAT SHOULD BE SUFFICIENT FOR QUORUM.

AND WE'LL HOPE TO SEE COMMISSIONER FIDELITY THERE AND WILL INFORM THE OTHER AS WELL.

THIS IS COMMISSIONER MAHEA.

UM, I, I COULDN'T BE AVAILABLE.

I'D PREFER TO ANGLE.

I KNOW THIS MAY BE UNPOPULAR, BUT, YOU KNOW, VARYING INTO 10:00 AM.

IT'D BE, IT'D BE IF WE'RE GOING TO AT EIGHT AND EIGHT 30 START, BUT I CAN, I CAN, UH, TRY TO ACCOMMODATE A 9:00 AM START.

HEY, WELL, I APPRECIATE THE MAGIC TRICK THAT YOU JUST PULLED IN SHOWING UP ON MY SCREEN BECAUSE YOU'RE NOT IN MY RECTANGLES.

UH, AND I'M REALLY GLAD TO SEE YOU.

UM, AND I CAN'T WAIT TO CONGRATULATE YOU IN PERSON, BUT, UH, EIGHT 30, IF WE'RE ALL THE COMMISSIONERS AND THE VICE CHAIR SAID WE'D BE AVAILABLE, UH, AT EIGHT AT NINE, WOULD WE BE ABLE TO SQUEEZE IN, UH, AN EIGHT 30? UH, IF ANYBODY'S A NO THERE, SPEAK UP, I'M GOING TO ASSUME OTHERWISE, UH, UNLESS SOMEONE SAYS SOMETHING OUT LOUD.

OKAY, GREAT.

THEN WE'LL, WE'LL, UH, LISA, WE WILL ALL MEET AT 8:30 AM FRIDAY BEFORE.

THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH.

YES.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

AND, UH, WITH THAT BEING SAID WOULD LOVE, UH, TO GET BACK TO UNHIDDEN, UH, AND, UH, ANY, UH, QUESTIONS OR THOUGHTS THAT ANYONE MIGHT HAVE AROUND, UH, UH, THE PRESENTATION ON THE CDBG FOR CSBG FORGIVE ME.

SURE.

THIS IS COMMISSIONER SLOAN.

I JUST HAVE ONE BRIEF QUESTION.

UM, LOOKING AT THE ENORMOUS AMOUNT OF FUNDING AND, UH, THE CARES ACT CSBG FUNDING, PARTICULARLY IN THE PARTNERSHIP WITH THE AUSTIN AREA, URBAN LEAGUE, DOES THAT FEEL LIKE SUFFICIENT STAFFING TO BE ABLE TO DISTRIBUTE THAT AMOUNT OF FUNDING BEFORE ITS EXPIRATION DATE? DO YOU FEEL PRETTY CONFIDENT THAT, UM, THAT WILL GET SENT OUT IN TIME? UM, UH, YES, WE ARE CONFIDENT WE WILL GO YOUR TIME.

THANK YOU.

YOU'RE WELCOME.

AND, UH, COMMISSIONER SLOAN,

[00:20:01]

IF I MAY ASK PARTICULARLY SORT OF, YOU KNOW, WHAT MIGHT BE SOME OF THE CONCERNS, UH, AROUND THAT.

AND, UH, I CERTAINLY APPRECIATE THE, UH, THE SHORT AND DIRECT ANSWER, UH, FROM , UH, IF THERE'S, IF WE'D LIKE TO PUT A FINER POINT ON IT, I THINK NOW'S A GREAT TIME TO DO SO, UH, REALLY PARTICULAR, UH, FOR ME, I, I UNDERSTAND THIS TO BE AN ENORMOUS INFLUX FOR A PROGRAM THAT DIDN'T EXIST, NOT SUCH A LONG TIME AGO, AND THE FACT THAT THE PARTNERSHIPS HAVE RAMPED UP, UM, IS PRETTY IMPRESSIVE.

JUST WANT TO KEEP A FINGER ON THE PULSE OF THAT SINCE WE HAVE, AS A COMMISSION REALLY LOOKS TOWARDS, UM, UTILIZING FUNDING AND IN THE HIGHEST CAPACITY POSSIBLE, UM, WANT TO IN TOUCH IN COMMUNICATION ABOUT THAT.

I APPRECIATE IT.

UH, WOULD YOU, DO YOU THINK, UH, UNHEALED, DO YOU THINK THAT THAT'S SOMETHING THAT WILL BE UPDATED ON, UH, WITH, AT A MONTHLY CADENCE, UH, THROUGH JULY, 2021? UH, YES, YOU WILL.

FANTASTIC.

THANK YOU, COMMISSIONER SULLEN.

ANY OTHER QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS? GREAT.

AND, UH, ONE CLARIFYING QUESTION THAT I HAVE IS, YOU KNOW, AROUND, UH, UH, THESE DOLLARS THAT ARE GOING TOWARDS SAY RENTAL ASSISTANCE OR, UH, UTILITIES ASSIST THOSE SEPARATE BUCKETS OF FUNDS, THEN THE FUNDS THAT WE'LL BE DISCUSSING LATER ON IN THE AGENDA ON HIM, UH, THEY WILL BE IN SEPARATE BUCKETS FOR SURE.

SO I WILL BE DISCUSSING THE, UH, NEIGHBORHOOD SERVICES, COMMUNITY EMERGENCY RENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM.

UM, I'M KIND OF GOING OVER THE FOUR BUCKETS THAT WE HAVE THIS TIME AROUND.

AND THEN I THINK LAURA RISE AND I THINK THERE'S SOMEWHERE, I DON'T SEE THE AGENDA IN FRONT OF ME, BUT YES, THERE ARE DIFFERENT BUCKETS.

FANTASTIC.

UH, IF WE HAVE, UH, NO FURTHER QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS ON THE SIDE AND THEN, UH, LET US, UH, MOVE ON, UH, TO THE NEW BUSINESS, WHICH I THINK IS A FANTASTIC SEGUE GIVEN THE LAST, UH, QUESTION FROM COMMISSIONER SLOAN, WHICH IS A BRIEFING AND DISCUSSION

[3A.Briefing and discussion on City of Austin’s COVID response initiatives]

ON, UH, THE CITY OF AUSTIN'S COVID RESPONSE INITIATIVES.

UM, AND, UH, YOU'LL SEE IN THE AGENDA, THE FOUR PROGRAMS THAT ARE COVERED, UH, AND, UH, LISA, IF YOU COULD, UH, PLEASE, UH, UH, EITHER TURN IT OVER TO A STAFF MEMBER TO INTRODUCE, UH, WHO WILL BE WITH US, OR IF YOU COULD PLEASE QUEUE UP, UH, WHOM WE HAVE TO SPEAK.

THANK YOU.

SO, UM, ON HOW YOU'LL BE THE FIRST SLIDE OR SLIDES IN THE DECK, AND, UH, WHILE THAT DECK IS BEING QUEUED UP, I GUESS I JUST WANT TO PREFACE THIS A BIT.

AND, UH, IT'S MY UNDERSTANDING THAT, UH, THIS COMMISSION WANTED A CLEARER UNDERSTANDING OF THE COVID RELIEF EFFORT, UH, ESPECIALLY THE ECONOMIC RELIEF EFFORTS, UH, THAT ARE ASSISTED, UH, RATHER THAT ARE ASSOCIATED WITH COVID HERE IN THE CITY OF AUSTIN.

UH, AND SO WHAT WE'RE ABOUT TO, UH, UH, GO THROUGH OUR FOUR KEY SORT OF PILLARS, IF YOU WILL, UH, WITHIN PARTICULARLY, UH, THE CITY OF AUSTIN IS DIFFERENT TYPES OF COVID RESPONSE INITIATIVES.

UH, AND SO WHEN YOU HEAR ME ALLUDE TO BUCKETS, IT'S JUST AN EASIER WAY FOR ME TO CONCEPTUALIZE, UH, HOW, UH, THESE FUNDS ARE SOURCED, UH, AND WHERE THEY'RE GOING TO TARGET A POPULATION THAT THEY'RE GOING TO, AND I HOPE WE'LL ALL SORT OF CONSIDER, UH, YOU KNOW, CONSIDER THAT, UH, IN OUR QUESTIONS AND COMMENTARY.

THANKS AND UNKEMPT BACK TO YOU.

FORGIVE THAT INTERRUPTION.

NO, NO, THANK YOU FOR CLARIFYING THAT.

UM, I WILL START WITH, UH, ARTHUR'S A SMALLER BUCKET THAN THE RISE IN THE RENT PROGRAM, BUT VERY SIGNIFICANT NONETHELESS, SINCE WE HAVE A VERY STRONG AND LONG-TERM RELATIONSHIP WITH OUR CLIENTS, I'VE BEEN ABLE TO CENTER US ACROSS AUSTIN.

UM, SO THE FIRST ONE THAT WE'LL TALK ABOUT IS THE CITY OF AUSTIN MONIES.

THIS PROGRAM STARTED APRIL 1ST OF 2020.

IT STARTS APRIL 1ST, EVERY YEAR.

UH, THAT WAS RIGHT AROUND THE TIME WHEN COVID HIT AND THINGS WERE LOOKING, UH, OR GOING TO GET WORSE.

SO WE GOT $200,000 FOR THAT.

WE'RE TARGETED RECIPIENT POPULATION, TRAVIS COUNTY, AND OUR CITY OF AUSTIN RESIDENTS, OUR SCHOOL

[00:25:01]

INCOMES UNDER 200 FEDERAL POVERTY INCOME GUIDELINES, UM, WHICH COMES TO ABOUT $25,000 A YEAR FOR ONE INDIVIDUAL, FOR A ONE PERSON HOUSEHOLD.

IF YOU THINK ABOUT THREE PEOPLE IN A HOUSEHOLD, THAT'S ABOUT $43,440, UM, A YEAR.

AND WE WERE SUPPOSED TO HAVE THIS MONEY THROUGH MARCH 31ST, 2021, OBVIOUSLY THAT DID NOT HAPPEN.

WE WERE ABLE TO QUICKLY RAMP UP AND HELP FOLKS WITH THIS $200,000 AND, UM, BASICALLY EXPENDED IT ALL BY SUMMER.

AND WITH THESE FUNDS, WE WERE ABLE TO ASSIST 193 HOUSEHOLDS IN AUSTIN, WHICH COMES OUT TO 542 INDIVIDUALS, UH, AVOIDING EVICTION AS PATO.

NEXT SLIDE PLEASE.

ALL RIGHT.

UH, THIS SLIDE AGAIN, THE PROGRAM STARTED ON APRIL 1ST AS WELL.

UH, THIS MONEY WAS GENERALLY C GENEROUSLY.

UH, YOU HAVE TO TAKE TWO OF US ARE ENTRUSTED TO US BY NEIGHBORHOOD HOUSING AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT.

UM, OUR GAY POPULATION WAS CITY OF AUSTIN RESIDENTS, AND AGAIN, HOUSEHOLD INCOME UNDER 200% AND GOT $250,000.

UM, AGAIN, THE PLAN WAS TO HAVE THIS MONEY THROUGH MARCH 31ST OF NEXT YEAR, THAT DID NOT HAPPEN.

UM, WE WERE ABLE TO EXPEND ALL OF THESE FUNDS AS WELL, ASSIST 151 HOUSEHOLDS IN THE CITY AND HELP 405 INDIVIDUALS AVOID EVICTION.

AND I THINK YOU GUYS HAD ASKED US PERMISSION, OR MY WANEE GENERAL LONNIE HAD ASKED US TO KIND OF SELF-ASSESS ON OUR PERFORMANCE AND TRULY NOT KNOW WHAT THAT MEANT, BUT I COULD GIVE US, GIVE US AN, A, UH, STAFF REALLY STEPPED UP.

UM, ELIGIBILITY CAN BE TEDIOUS, CAN TAKE TIME CROSSED AND JUST NOT EASY.

AND OUR STAFF REALLY STEPPED UP TO BE ABLE TO HANDLE THE VOLUME OF, UM, OF REQUESTS VERY BEAUTIFULLY.

THOSE WERE THE RESULTS FOR 105 INDIVIDUALS AVOIDING EVICTION WITH THIS POT OF MONEY.

NEXT SLIDE.

ALL RIGHT.

LIKE I MENTIONED, IN OUR EARLIER REPORT, WE GOT SOME EXTRA FUNDS CSBG CALL SOME DISCRETIONARY FUNDS, UH, $53,905.

WE STARTED THIS PROGRAM JULY 13TH OF 2020.

UH, IT WAS A SHORT PROGRAM.

THE FUNDS WERE SUPPOSED TO BE EXPENDED BY AUGUST 31ST.

AND WE WERE VERY EASILY ABLE TO DO THAT, UH, AND VERY HAPPY TO HAVE THOSE EXTRA TWO, $3,000.

AND WITH THE HELP OF, UH, EASTER SEALS OF CENTRAL TEXAS, WE'RE ABLE TO MAKE THESE PAYMENTS ON TIME TO LANDLORDS.

AND WITH THESE FUNDS, WE WERE ABLE TO ASSESS 27 HOUSEHOLDS AND THEY MEET INDIVIDUALLY TO AVOID EVICTION.

NEXT SLIDE PLEASE.

AND THIS IS WHERE WE ARE TODAY.

UM, THIS IS THE CARES ACT FUNDING.

THE PROGRAM START DATE IS TARGETED FOR NOVEMBER 15, 2020, UM, TARGET POPULATIONS, TRAVIS COUNTY, PANDORA CITY OF AUSTIN RESIDENTS SAYING CAN COME, UH, 200%.

UM, IT WAS 125%, UH, THROUGH TDA CA LIKE THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT UP THAT TO 200%, UH, EARLY ON IN THE PANDEMIC.

THIS IS FEDERAL MONIES ABOUT $1.2 MILLION.

AND WE HAVE NOT EXPANDED ANY YET BECAUSE WE HAVEN'T STARTED.

WE HAVE THESE FUNDS THROUGH JULY 31ST OF 2021.

AND LIKE I SAID, WE'RE WORKING WITH AUSTIN AREA, URBAN LEAGUE.

WE MET WITH THEM THIS MORNING, UH, ONE FINAL TIME BEFORE WE LAUNCHED THIS.

AND I'M VERY OPTIMISTIC THAT WE'LL BE ABLE TO CONSISTENTLY, AND YOU'RE SEEING OURSELVES AND HELPING OUR COMMUNITY GET SPARKED INTO THEIR, NOT THEIR HANDS, BUT AT THE HANDS OF THE LANDLORDS SO THAT THEY CAN AVOID EVICTION.

SO, UH, HAPPY TO REPORT MONTHLY ON OUR PROGRESS.

UM, AND I THINK THAT IS MY LAST SLIDE.

THOSE WERE THE FOUR POTS THAT WE'VE HAD THIS YEAR OF FOLKS AFFECTED BY COVID 19.

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

UH, AND, UH, WELL, I JUST WANT TO, UH, UH, ASK A QUICK QUESTION BEFORE I, UH, IT'S, UH, IT'S AN ADDITIONAL QUESTION.

ARE THERE ANY LESSONS LEARNED? IT SEEMS LIKE WE'RE ABLE TO EXPAND THE DOLLARS, PRETTY EXPEDIENTLY, UH, AND SORT OF IDENTIFY NEED AS WELL AS IDENTIFY AVENUES TO BE MEAN TO, YOU KNOW, JUST SORT OF ENSURE,

[00:30:01]

UH, THE DOLLARS ARE GETTING INTO THE HANDS THAT THEY NEED TO GET, UH, AGAINST TOO.

UM, ARE THERE ANY LESSONS LEARNED OR, YOU KNOW, FOR EXAMPLE, WORKING WITH EASTER SEALS, I MEAN, DID YOU JUST HAVE LIKE, SORT OF A, A GROUP OF, UH, TENANTS AND LANDLORDS WHOM YOU HAD EASY ACCESS TO, OR SORT OF WHEN I SAY EASY, LIKE SORT OF DIRECT ACCESS TO, UH, YOU KNOW, TO BE ABLE TO WORK DIRECTLY WITH LANDLORDS AND THAT, THAT'S JUST AN EXAMPLE OF, YOU KNOW, IT'S JUST A, IT'S JUST, JUST A HYPOTHETICAL EXAMPLE.

I DON'T KNOW.

I MEAN, ARE THERE ANY LESSONS LEARNED THAT YOU MIGHT BE ABLE TO SHARE, UH, IN THE SELF-ASSESSMENT PAYDAY? UM, I THINK ONE OF THE LESSONS LEARNED IS THAT YOU REALLY HAVE TO START STRONG WITH OUR COMMUNITY PARTNER, UH, SO THAT WE ARE ALL ON THE SAME PAGE IN TERMS OF, UH, THE, THE PROCESS, UH, NOTICE OF PAYMENT PROCESSING.

UH, SOMETIMES THERE COULD BE, UM, A LAG IN RESPONSE.

UM, I MEAN, IF THEY GET INTO THE WEEDS THAT WOULD BE HAVING MULTIPLE POINTS OF CONTACT AT THE AGENCIES IN CASE SOMEBODY IS ON VACATION AND SOMEBODY GETS SICK, WHETHER IT'S COVID RELATED OR NOT, UH, WE REALLY NEED TO KNOW WHO IS COVERING FOR THAT PERSON.

UM, THOSE WERE VERY MINOR, BUT IT DID HAPPEN THAT WE WOULD, UM, YOU KNOW, THEY WOULD TAKE A LITTLE LONGER FOR US TO GET THOSE PAYMENTS OR FOR EASTER SEALS TO GET THE DEMONS OUT.

AND I THINK THE COMMUNICATION, A CLEAR EXPECTATIONS, LIKE WE'VE BEEN DOING WITH THE URBAN LEAGUE UP TO TODAY, UH, I DON'T SEE, UM, ANY HUGE BARRIERS.

THE COMMUNITY KNOWS THAT WE'RE HERE.

UM, WE HAVE OUR WEBSITE WITH ALL THE INFORMATION.

WE HAVE COMMUNITY PARTNERS WHO KNOW THIS, UH, AND LIKE I SAID, MOSTLY IT'S FOLKS WHO HAVE BEEN COMING TO THE NEIGHBORHOOD CENTERS FOR THE PAST SEVERAL YEARS, WHO KNOW WHAT WE DO, UH, WHERE A FAMILY MEMBER OR A NEIGHBOR.

UM, SO I, WE WILL, I DON'T THINK WE WILL HAVE ANY, UM, ANY ISSUE WITH HAVING, UM, PEOPLE CALL US FOR ASSISTANCE THAT, YEAH.

UH, THANK YOU FOR THAT.

AND, UH, WELL THERE, WE HAVE IT COMMISSIONERS THAT'S BUCKET, NUMBER ONE, UH, IF YOU WILL.

AND IT LOOKED LIKE THERE WAS ABOUT 500 K IN THE FIRST, UH, SORT OF TRAUNCH OF THE THREE DIVISIONS THAT ONHEALTH SHARED WITH US, UH, THAT WERE ALL ALREADY EXPENDED.

AND 1.2 MILLION, UH, THAT, UH, APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN RECENTLY, UH, CONTRACTED OR IMMINENTLY CONTRACTED AND, UH, AND TO BE EXPENDED BY JULY 31.

SO IF THERE'S ANY QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS.

GREAT.

UM, THANK YOU THEN VERY MUCH TO THOSE REFERRING THIS FOR THING, HELEN, WE'LL MOVE ON TO THE RISE PROGRAM, UH, WHERE I BELIEVE CHAIRMAN WANTING, I'M SORRY TO INTERRUPT, BUT, UH, WE HAVE ONE MORE SLIDE THAT IT'S A UTILITY ASSISTANCE, WHICH IS I JUST FINISHED A RENTAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAM.

OH, SORRY.

NO, NO, IT'S NOT YOUR FAULT.

UH, SO IF YOU CAN GO TO THE NEXT NOTE, THERE IT IS.

UM, BUT WE DO HAVE A SMALLER UTILITY ASSISTANCE PROGRAM.

UH, I STARTED IN JANUARY OF THIS YEAR, THIS IS THROUGH, UM, YOU LOST AN ENERGY OR IT'S, UH, AVAILABLE TO AUSTIN ENERGY ACCOUNT HOLDER.

THEY MUST HAVE AN OUTSTANDING BALANCE HOUSEHOLD INCOME, AGAIN, UNDER 200% FUNDING SOURCE.

LIKE I MENTIONED, AUSTIN ENERGY'S PLUS ONE PROGRAM, A TOTAL FUNDING AMOUNT OF 60,000, ALMOST $61,000.

WE'VE EXPENDED ABOUT 40,000 TO DATE.

UM, WE HAVE THIS FUNDING THROUGH NEXT SEPTEMBER AND, UM, WE SO FAR HAVE BEEN ABLE TO ASSIST A HUNDRED HOUSEHOLDS TO LET A 95 INDIVIDUALS, UH, BASICALLY KIND OF CATCH UP WITH THE UTILITIES.

AND I KNOW THEY'RE NOT DOING SHUTOFFS RIGHT NOW, SO THAT'S GOOD.

WE ARE JUST CONTINUING TO WORK WITH FOLKS WITH THE SMALL POT OF MONEY TO HELP THEM CATCH UP WITH THEIR UTILITY BILLS DUE TO A COVID RELATED LOSS OF JOB REDUCTION IN HOURS, ET CETERA.

THAT'S THE LAST LITTLE POT THAT WE HAVE AT THE NSU.

AND THAT'S THE END OF MY PRESENTATION.

THANK YOU.

I CAN, I DO HAVE A QUESTION ABOUT, UH, THAT ONE AND HAPPY TO ALSO OPEN THE FLOOR TO THE COMMISSIONER FOR A QUESTION THERE.

SO IT LOOKS LIKE FROM JANUARY ONE TO SEPTEMBER 30, WE WERE ABLE TO EXPEND 40, AROUND 41 K OUT OF A TOTAL OF AROUND 61.

K.

UM, WHAT WOULD YOU SAY IS THE BARRIER TO EXPANDING THOSE DOLLARS MORE QUICKLY? YOU KNOW, CLEARLY WE WERE ABLE TO EXPEND 500 K IN A MUCH AT A MUCH MORE RAPID PIG.

UH, AND YOU KNOW, HERE WE HAVE

[00:35:01]

20 K LEFTOVER AND CAN YOU SPEAK TO THE, SORT OF THE SELF-ASSESSMENT? AND SO MAYBE WHAT THE BARRIERS ARE, WHETHER THEY'RE, OR IF THERE ARE REALLY NO BARRIERS, BUT JUST MAYBE RATHER A PRACTICAL REASON FOR, FOR SPENDING BEING A LITTLE BIT OVER PAID.

YEAH, IT'S A SMALLER PROGRAM AND THERE'S A LOT MORE AGENCIES OUT IN THE COMMUNITY WHO ARE PART OF THE PLUS ONE PROGRAM.

SO PEOPLE CAN RECEIVE UP TO, I BELIEVE NOW, $2,000 IN PLEDGES.

UH, WE KEPT OURS AT 500.

I SAW SOMETIMES PEOPLE COME INTO US.

UM, WE GO THROUGH THE ELIGIBILITY, WE FIGURE OUT WHAT WE CAN HELP WITH UP TO $5, AND THEN THEY MAY GO SOMEWHERE ELSE TO GET ANOTHER PLEDGE TO COVER THE REST OF THE BILL.

SO I THINK THAT'S THE PRACTICAL ANSWER.

THERE'S A LOT MORE AGENCIES THAT HAVE THIS PROGRAM, SO WE'RE NOT THE ONLY AGENCY IN TOWN AND THEREFORE WE DON'T EXPAND IT AS QUICKLY AS WE WOULD, IF WE WERE THE ONLY AGENCY OR ONE OF THE NEW CHURCHES, OTHER NONPROFITS THAT RECEIVE PLUS ONE PROGRAMMING MEAN, THANK YOU.

DO ANY, UH, ANY OF THE OTHER COMMISSIONERS, ANY QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS I'M INTERESTED IN HOW ALL THESE PROGRAMS COMPARE WITH EACH OTHER AND WHAT IT LOOKS LIKE TO AN APPLICANT, WHETHER THEY, WHETHER THEY PICK SOMEBODY TO GO ASK FOR HELP, BECAUSE THEY KNOW THAT HELP IS THE MOST TAILORED TO THEM, OR IT SEEMS LIKE THERE ARE A LOT OF PROGRAMS AND MAYBE PEOPLE JUST GO TO THE FIRST ONE THEY HEAR ABOUT, CAN YOU COMMENT ON THAT? I THINK, UM, YES, I CAN, UH, VICE CHAIR, UM, IN MY EXPERIENCE WHEN IT REALLY COMES DOWN TO AT LEAST WITH THE NEIGHBORHOOD CENTERS IS RELATIONSHIP.

I MEAN, WE CAN PUT OUT, WE CAN PUT IT ON CONNECT.

ATX WHO A ONE WEBSITE YOU CAN PUT FLYERS OUT THERE, BUT IN THE END, THE COMMUNITY IS VERY STRONG AND OUR NEIGHBORHOOD CENTER COMMUNITY HAS BEEN AROUND FOR GENERATIONS.

IT'S GOOD AND BAD.

AND I ALWAYS SAY, I WISH, UM, I DIDN'T HAVE MY JOB BECAUSE IF I DIDN'T HAVE MY JOB, WOULDN'T BE, YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT DISPARITIES AND EQUITY PEOPLE WOULD BE DOING OKAY WITHOUT A NEIGHBORHOOD CENTER, AT LEAST WHEN IT COMES TO FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE.

SO I REALLY BELIEVE THAT THE RELATIONSHIP AND THE TRUST THAT WE HAVE WITH OUR COMMUNITY IS WHAT KEEPS US, UH, BEING ABLE TO HELP PEOPLE EFFICIENTLY AND, UM, UM, WITH INTEGRITY AND RESPECT.

SO I, I THINK WE GET PEOPLE WHO ALREADY KNOW US, UM, FROM THEIR NEIGHBORS, THEIR FAMILY.

AND THEN WE ALSO DO GET PEOPLE THAT CALL TWO, ONE, ONE, AND TWO, ONE ONE KNOWS ABOUT US AND GIVES THEM OUR INFORMATION, WHETHER THEY GO TO CONNECT ATX AND WE ARE THERE AS WELL.

BUT I THINK THE MAJORITY, AT LEAST OF OUR, THE PEOPLE THAT WE ASSESSED AT THE NEIGHBORHOOD CENTERS ARE I WOULD CALL NEIGHBORHOOD CENTER CLIENTS.

UM, THEY ALREADY HAVE A TRUSTING RELATIONSHIP WITH US.

I KNOW THAT THEY WILL, WE'LL BE THERE FOR THEM.

AND THEY KNOW THAT IF WE CAN'T HELP, THEY ALWAYS ARE WILLING TO DO A WARM HAND TO AN AGENCY THAT YOU MENTIONED THAT PEOPLE, UM, GET SOME OF THE MONEY THEY NEED FOR A UTILITY BILL WITH YOU, BUT THEN THEY GO OTHER PLACES.

SO IT SEEMS LIKE THEY MIGHT GO TO ONE PLACE, MIGHT LEAVE IN TIME TO DO OTHER THINGS THEY NEED TO DO.

I HAVE NOT HEARD THAT COMPLAINT BEFORE, BUT I COULD FOLLOW UP AND SEE IF I DO GET SOME INFORMATION ON THAT.

SOMETIMES PEOPLE COME TO US SAYING WE WERE ABLE TO GET A $500 PLEDGE AT ST STEPHEN'S CHURCH.

AND MY BILL IS I STILL NEED ANOTHER $350 TO COVER THE REST OF MY BILL.

CAN YOU GUYS HELP AND GO THROUGH THE, UH, WHAT'D YOU MEAN WHEN HE PROCESSED AND WE HELPED THEM WITH THE REST OF THE BALANCE? SO I, I DON'T KNOW IF, WHAT YOU SAY IS ACCURATE OF A LOT OF PEOPLE.

IF THEY'RE SPENDING ALL DAY GOING TO DIFFERENT AGENCIES, TRYING TO FIND, I DON'T COVER THE WHOLE BILL, AND IF IT WOULD BE BETTER, IF WE COULD COVER IT ALL, AND OUR CENTER FELL, WE ADMINISTRATIVELY DECIDED TO CAP IT AT 500, UM, OR THE NEIGHBOR'S SERVICES UNIT.

SOMETIMES WE DO GO UP OFF, THEY CALL IT A STAFFING, OR THERE IS A SITUATION.

UM, WE DO STAFF THERE WITH THE MANAGERS AND WE CAN PLEDGE MORE THAN THAT.

AND WE'RE VERY OPEN TO THAT.

AGAIN, WE DON'T WANT TO TURN PEOPLE AWAY AT CREATING MORE BARRIERS FOR THEM.

WE WILL MORE LIKELY THAN NOT WE'LL ASSIST WITH MORE THAN THE 500, DEPENDING ON THE SITUATION,

[00:40:03]

CHILDREN IN THE HOUSEHOLD, SOMEBODY WITH A MEDICAL CONDITION, UM, ET CETERA.

THIS IS COMMISSIONER MIHIR.

I JUST WANT TO ASK IT IS THE RAISE HAND FUNCTION WORKING I HAVE ATTEMPTED TO, AND I'M NOT SURE IF IT'S REGISTERING, I DON'T SEE IT.

OKAY.

SO I GUESS IF I MAY ON HERE, UH, I WANTED TO SAY, WELL, THANK YOU FOR ALL THIS HARD WORK.

IT'S NOT EASY, HONESTLY, HAVING, UH, NOW I CAN SPEAK FREELY HAVING LEFT THE CITY ABOUT WHAT IT'S LIKE TO STAND UP.

THESE CARES PROGRAMS AND WORK WITH THIRD PARTY ADMINISTRATORS AND FIGURE OUT, UM, YOU KNOW, LOOK TRANSLATION AND, AND HOW TO RELEASE THE PRESS RELEASE THAT IS, AND MAKING SURE THAT EVERYTHING PASSES MUSTARD.

SO I KNOW IT'S NO EASY TASK.

UM, I WAS CURIOUS ON HERE, I THINK YOU MENTIONED THAT SORT OF NUMBER ONE INFLUENCING FACTORS, AS FAR AS PEOPLE THAT YOU KNOW, ARE ABLE TO FIND OUT AND THEN, UH, APPLY AND SUCCESSFULLY APPLY FOR THESE PROGRAMS IS PAST RELATIONSHIPS TO THE CENTERS.

BUT GIVEN THAT WE'RE IN, COVID, I'M CURIOUS, IS THERE A WAY THAT MAYBE WE COULD SEE THE DATA AS FAR AS WHO, WHO, UH, SUCCESSFUL SORT OF RECIPIENTS OF THESE DOLLARS BROKEN OUT BY DISTRICT? UH, BECAUSE I THINK RIGHT.

DIFFERENT DISTRICTS, SOME DON'T, I DON'T KNOW IF EVERY DISTRICT HAS A NEIGHBORHOOD CENTER OR AN OPERATIONAL ONE.

UM, SO I WOULD JUST BE INTRIGUED AND I GUESS THE SORT OF FOLLOW-UP TO THAT IS WHEN PEOPLE SCREEN FOR THIS APPLICATION, I'M ASSUMING IT'S A PHONE, PHONE PROCESS.

DO THEY ASK, DO YOU ASK, UM, WHERE, LIKE HOW THEY, HOW, HOW THEY WERE REFERRED OR HOW THEY FOUND OUT ABOUT THE PROGRAM SO THAT YOU KNOW, THAT HOW THEY'RE, HOW THEY'RE COMING TO, TO APPLY THAT'S A LOT.

I THINK I CAN GO BACKWARD AND UNPACK THAT IT JUST, UH, NO, THAT'S, THAT'S A GOOD QUESTION.

WE DO, BUT WE'RE NOT, HONESTLY, WE'RE NOT CONSISTENT WITH THE, WITH THE REFERRAL SOURCE DATA.

UM, SO THANK YOU FOR BRINGING THAT UP.

CAUSE I THINK WE CAN BE MORE CONSISTENT, ESPECIALLY WITH THE CARE SAC MONIES AND BE ABLE TO KIND OF COME BACK AND SAY, OKAY, THIS IS HOW IT BREAKS OUT BY ZIP CODE OR AREA.

SO THANK YOU FOR THAT YOU BACK.

RIGHT? I WOULD, I WOULD JUST HATE, YOU KNOW, IF, YOU KNOW, IDEALLY, HOPEFULLY THE DOLLARS ARE GETTING SPREAD AROUND WELL AND THE DISTRICTS, BUT, YOU KNOW, IF, UH, A S A COUNCIL MEMBER OR STAFF COME LOOKING IN THAT DAVE IS NOT AVAILABLE, I COULD IMAGINE HOW THAT COULD BECOME A COMPLICATED THING, BUT EVEN MYSELF, I WOULD LOVE TO KNOW HOW, HOW WELL MY, MY COMMUNITY IS DOING AT KNOWING ABOUT THOSE DOLLARS AND, AND GETTING THOSE RELIEF PROGRAMS. SO, UM, I THINK REFERRAL, AND THEN I KNOW YOU, DO YOU HAVE TO TRACK BY DISTRICT CAUSE YOU GET THEIR ADDRESS INFORMATION.

IS THAT SOMETHING WE CAN TALK ABOUT LATER? OKAY, COOL.

AND THEN MAYBE, MAYBE WE CAN MAKE SURE WE'RE SUPPORTIVE AND STRATEGIZING WHEN, IF WE GET THE CONSENSUS IN OUR POLICYMAKERS TO GET SOME MORE RELIEF OUT.

SURE.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU, SIR.

THANK YOU, COMMISSIONER.

YEAH, I THINK THAT MAKES A LOT OF SENSE.

AND FOR US TO, UM, UH, WE'LL, UH, WE'LL UM, TRY TO GET BACK IN AND SPEAK WITH DANIELLE ABOUT HOW WE MIGHT POTENTIALLY GET THAT FRAMED.

IT'S NOT MY DISTRICT AT THE OUTSET, AT LEAST BY ZIP CODE.

AND I THINK THE WAY YOU'RE FRAMING IT, COMMISSIONER MAHEA AROUND, YOU KNOW, PERHAPS LOOKING AT WHERE THE RELIEF IS SUCCESSFULLY GETTING TO, WITH RESPECT TO THE LOCATIONS OF THE NEIGHBORHOOD CENTERS WOULD ALSO BE REALLY INTERESTING.

AND PERHAPS AGAIN, ON THE SAME NOTION OF LOOKING AT HOW WE MIGHT GO AS POLICY MAKERS, UH, UH, TO SPREAD AROUND RELEASE, UH, WE COULD ALSO LOOK AT PERHAPS WHERE THERE MAY BE A CASE FOR, UH, YOU KNOW, CREATING MORE NEIGHBORHOOD CENTERS, UH, OR, OR, YOU KNOW, AT LEAST SCALING OUT WHATEVER THE INTERVENTION IS.

THE CORE INTERVENTIONS ARE THAT THE NEIGHBORHOOD CENTERS ARE SUCCESSFULLY DOING.

AND I REALLY, REALLY APPRECIATE THAT.

THANKS.

DID WE HAVE ANY OTHER QUESTIONS FOR UPHILL? I WOULD LOVE TO BE ABLE TO MOVE ON AND KNOW THAT WE'LL HAVE A PERIOD AFTER ALL FOUR FOLKS SPEAK, UH, TO BE ABLE TO ASK QUESTIONS OF EVERYONE, BECAUSE I THINK A LOT OF THESE MIGHT BE UNIVERSALLY APPLICABLE AND WE MAY BE ABLE TO SORT OF LEARN FROM THE DIFFERENT EXPERIENCES OF THE DIFFERENT DEPARTMENTS AND THE DIFFERENT FUND SETS.

BUT IF THERE'S ANY QUESTIONS THAT WE FIND THAT MIGHT BE EXTREMELY SPECIFIC RIGHT NOW, I'D LOVE TO HEAR THEM BRILLIANT.

WE APPRECIATE YOU ON HILL AND, UH, WE'LL MOVE ON TO THE, UH, THE NEXT, UH, UH, DISCUSSION POINT, WHICH IS THE PUBLIC HEALTH.

FORGIVE ME.

I DON'T KNOW THE STAFF MEMBER FOR THEM.

THIS IS LAUREN IS UP NEXT.

HEY LAURA.

HELLO

[00:45:01]

MATE.

HI.

SO I'M HERE TO TELL YOU ABOUT BRIAN'S 1.0 AND RISE TWO POINT NOW, JUST AS A REMINDER, UM, RISE, 1.0, COUNCIL PASSED THE RESOLUTION DOC ON APRIL 9TH.

UH, WE DID THIS AS A SOLICITATION PROCESS FOR THE $15 MILLION.

THIS WAS TO PROVIDE DIRECT RELIEF ASSISTANCE, WHICH COULD BE FOOD ACCESS CASE MANAGEMENT, BEHAVIORAL HEALTH SERVICES ASSISTANCE WITH UTILITY BILLS ASSISTANCE WITH MEDICAL EXPENSES, A WIDE VARIETY OF SUPPORT SERVICES, AND ALSO ACTUAL DIRECT FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE TO CLIENTS.

UH, WE DID THAT IN THE FORM OF GIFT CARDS.

UM, THE TARGET POPULATION, AS YOU CAN SEE, TAKEN DIRECTLY FROM THE RESOLUTION, WE WERE LOOKING FOR PEOPLE OF COLOR, LGBTQ, SENIORS, IMMIGRANTS, UM, INDIVIDUALS OUT MENTAL DISABILITIES, SURVIVORS OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE INDIVIDUALS WHO WERE RECENTLY INCARCERATED SIMILARLY, UM, LOW INCOME UNDER 200% OF FEDERAL POVERTY RESIDENTS OF AUSTIN, TRAVIS COUNTY.

AND THEY WOULD HAVE BEEN INELIGIBLE FOR THE CARES PROGRAM, WHICH WAS AT STIMULUS FUNDING.

UM, THIS WAS A $15 MILLION, 12.5 OF IT.

UM, AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH WAS RESPONSIBLE FOR DOING THE SOLICITATION, GETTING THE FUNDING COMMUNITY AND THE EQUITY OFFICE AND DID ANOTHER 2.5 MILLION FOR THE TOTAL 15 MILLION.

UM, THROUGH THAT, WE ENDED UP FUNDING 20 DIFFERENT ORGANIZATIONS TO PROVIDE A WIDE VARIETY OF SERVICES TO THE COMMUNITY.

UM, ALL OF THE FUNDS HAVE BEEN AWARDED, UM, AT THIS TIME WE'RE STILL COLLECTING A LOT OF THE DATA, BUT OVER 10,000 PEOPLE RECEIVE SOME FORM OF A SERVICE IF WE'RE INCLUDING THE CENTRAL TEXAS FOOD BANK, WHICH WAS ABOUT 2 MILLION OF THAT, THAT'S OVER 89,000 HOUSEHOLDS THAT RECEIVED SERVICES.

UM, SOME OF THAT IN FOOD, SOME OF THAT IN ACTUAL SUPPORT OR PAYMENTS ON BEHALF OF THEM TO PAY RENT OR PAY FOR DIFFERENT THINGS THAT THEY KIND OF NEEDED AT THAT PARTICULAR POINT IN TIME.

UM, ALL OF THE FUNDS HAVE BEEN AWARDED.

ALL OF THEM HAVE BEEN EXPENDED.

WE'RE JUST WAITING FOR THE REMAINDER OF THE AGENCIES TO REPORT INFORMATION TO US.

UM, I'D SAY I'D GIVE US A B, UM, PARTLY BECAUSE, I MEAN, ONE, WE DID IT VERY QUICKLY.

UH, WE TRIED TO MAKE THE APPLICATION PROCESS AS SIMPLE AS POSSIBLE.

WE'RE TRYING TO MAKE SURE THAT WE WORKED WITH ALL OF THE TARGET POPULATIONS THAT WERE IDENTIFIED WIDE VARIETY OF SUPPORT SERVICES AVAILABLE TO THE COMMUNITY.

UM, WE HAD OVER 70 APPLICATIONS, SO IT WAS KIND OF A LOT JUST TO PUT THE INFORMATION OUT THERE AND TO GET ORGANIZATIONS OUT THERE.

UM, BUT, BUT WE DID IT.

AND I THINK WHAT WE LEARNED, WE LEARNED A LOT, PARTICULARLY BECAUSE IT WAS IN A TIME OF COVID, UM, WHERE THE TYPICAL CLIENT ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS AND GETTING INFORMATION FROM CLIENTS WAS DIFFICULT.

SO OUR ORGANIZATIONS WERE STRATEGIZING HOW THEY COULD KEEP THEMSELVES AND THEIR STAFF SAFE AND HOW THEY COULD KEEP THE PUBLIC SAFE AND ALSO CONTINUE TO DELIVER SERVICES.

ARE THERE ANY QUESTIONS SPECIFICALLY ABOUT RISE? 1.0 YEAH.

THIS ONE WAS YOUR INCOME.

YEAH.

UNDER 200% OF FEDERAL POVERTY IS WHAT WE WERE LOOKING.

THANK YOU.

SORRY.

WERE THEY FLAT AWARD AMOUNTS? I'M SORRY, I MISSED IT.

THEY WERE NOT FLOOD AWARD AMOUNTS.

UM, SO IT REALLY DEPENDED ON WHAT SERVICE SOMEONE WAS LOOKING FOR.

AND IT ALSO DEPENDED ON THE ORGANIZATION AND KIND OF WHAT, HOW THEY DECIDED TO AWARD THE FUNDS.

UM, SO THERE WAS KIND OF A CAP OF, UM, 1,200 PER PERSON THAT COULD GET, UM, KIND OF ASSISTANCE UP TO $5,000 FOR FAMILIES.

SO THAT COULD BE EITHER IN THE FORM OF HELPING PAY SOMEONE'S BRENT SOMEONE'S UTILITY.

THERE WAS ALSO AN OPTION FOR THEM TO GET $500 IN LIKE A GIFT CARD TO THE GROCERY STORE OR A THOUSAND DOLLARS OF A VISA GIFT CARD.

SO DEPENDING ON THE AGENCY, HOW THEY PROPOSE TO DO THEIR PROGRAM, THEY WERE ABLE TO DESIGN IT TO MEET THOSE NEEDS, BUT WE STEPPED KIND OF THE HIGHEST LIMIT POSSIBLE WITH THAT.

IF I COULD ASK A FOLLOW-UP QUESTION.

SO WORKING WITH SO MANY, UM, NONPROFITS AND PARTNERS, I'M CURIOUS IF YOU, MAYBE YOU COULD ANONYMIZE THEM IF YOU HAVE TO, BUT DO YOU HAVE CASE STUDIES OF WHAT THEY SUCCEEDED IN IN, OR, YOU KNOW, WHAT SORT OF WAS THE GOLD STANDARD IN TERMS OF HOW IT WENT WITH THE CRIMINALIZATION AND THEN MAYBE CHALLENGING ASPECTS? UH, AND THEN I GUESS, OR YOU COULD JUST KIND OF GET UP TO LESSONS LEARNED THAT HOW YOU, HOW YOU MIGHT DEPLOY IT DIFFERENTLY OR PARTNER DIFFERENTLY FOR THE EFFECTS AROUND FINDING IF IT, IF IT DOES MANIFEST.

RIGHT.

SO I THINK DEFINITELY YOU'LL SEE RISE 2.0, LOOKS A LOT DIFFERENT THAN RISE.

1.0, I THINK IT WAS CHALLENGING, PARTICULARLY BECAUSE WE WANTED THE FUNDING TO BE SPENT QUICKLY.

BUT WHEN YOU HAVE A NUMBER OF REQUIREMENTS FOR CLIENT ELIGIBILITY, THE DATA THAT YOU NEED THAT KIND OF DELAYED THE PROCESS, I THINK STAFFING, UH, FOR SOME OF OUR NONPROFITS WAS A BIT CHALLENGING

[00:50:01]

TO GET MORE PEOPLE QUICKLY, TO BE ABLE TO HELP.

I THINK FOR THE COMMUNITY, IT WAS DIFFICULT TO FIGURE OUT LIKE, WHO DO I GO TO TO ASK QUESTIONS? UM, AND WE HEARD A LOT OF STORIES OF PEOPLE CALLING AND NOT BEING ABLE TO GET THROUGH BECAUSE THERE WAS SUCH A DEMAND IN SUCH A GREAT NEED, YOU KNOW, AND THEN, YOU KNOW, PEOPLE ENDED UP AT THE BACK OF A LINE, NOT KNOWING WHEN THEY WENT OR IF THEY WOULD BE ABLE TO GET CALLED.

SO, I MEAN, I THINK EVERYBODY LEARNED A LOT DURING THAT PROCESS, UM, AND HOW WE CAN BEST SERVE THE COMMUNITY.

I MEAN, IN THE NIGHT I PERSONALLY ALLOWED, I WOULD SAY TO AN IDEAL SITUATION, IF WE HAD KIND OF A CENTRALIZED WAY TO TRACK ALL THIS INFORMATION, BUT WE DIDN'T BECAUSE WE DIDN'T KNOW WHEN SOMEONE WAS GOING TO HAVE FUNDING AVAILABLE OR WHAT THEIR PARTICULAR NEED WAS.

UM, SO A LOT OF LESSONS LEARNED IN THAT.

AND AGAIN, THAT'S WHY I SAY I'D GIVE US A B, BECAUSE I'M LIKE, WE GOT MONEY OUT.

WE GOT ORGANIZATIONS INVOLVED QUICKLY, BUT I THINK WE, THERE WERE POTENTIALLY PEOPLE IN THE COMMUNITY.

IT WAS DIFFICULT.

UM, ESPECIALLY IF THEY HAD TO CALL FIVE DIFFERENT NONPROFITS TO SEE WHO COULD HELP ME, UM, BECAUSE THEY WERE ALL OFFERING SOMETHING A LITTLE BIT DIFFERENT.

SO I THINK THAT'S A PERFECT SEGUE TO START TALKING ABOUT RISE 2.0.

UM, IF YOU CAN JUST SWITCH OVER TO THE NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

SO RISE 2.0, THIS WAS ANOTHER COUNCIL RESOLUTION.

UM, IT PASSED ON JUNE 4TH.

UM, IT'S $12 MILLION.

UH, THIS WAS BROKEN UP INTO TWO PARTS.

WE MADE THE DECISION TO BREAK IT UP INTO TWO PARTS.

2 MILLION WAS DIRECTOR WAR TO THREE DIFFERENT ORGANIZATIONS TO JUST PROVIDE DIRECT FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE.

THIS WASN'T GOING TO BE TIERED.

THIS WASN'T GOING TO, WE SAY, IT'S GOING TO BE A FLAT $2,000 PER FAMILY IN THE FORM OF A GIFT CARD SO THAT THE FAMILIES CAN MAKE DECISIONS ON HOW TO BEST USE THE MONEY FOR WHAT THEY NEEDED AT THAT PARTICULAR TIME.

THEN FOR THE ADDITIONAL $10 MILLION, WE ACTUALLY HAD A SOLICITATION PROCESS, UM, BECAUSE WE WERE LOOKING FOR AN ONLINE APPLICATION PROCESS AND ALSO PHONE BANK.

SO WE WANTED TO BE SENSITIVE TO THE FACT THAT THIS SHOULDN'T BE A FIRST COME FIRST SERVED.

THERE ARE PEOPLE IN OUR COMMUNITY THAT MAYBE DON'T HAVE ACCESS TO TECHNOLOGY.

SO WE NEEDED KIND OF A PHONE OPTION TO ASSIST INDIVIDUALS IF THEY DIDN'T HAVE ACCESS TO TECHNOLOGY.

UM, SO THAT ONLINE APPLICATION PROCESS WAS OPEN FOR A WEEK, STARTING ON SEPTEMBER 14TH.

UM, IT CLOSED ON SEPTEMBER 21ST, UM, FOR THAT WHOLE TIME.

AND WE TRIED TO MAKE THE PROCESS AS EASY AS POSSIBLE FOR PEOPLE TO DO A LOT OF SELF CERTIFICATIONS OF THEIR INCOME, TO SUBMIT PICTURES OF THEIR ID AND A SELFIE, AND TO CERTIFY THAT THEY HAD BEEN IMPACTED BY COVID-19.

SO THERE WERE OVER 50,000 APPLICATIONS THAT WERE SUBMITTED, UM, FOR A NUMBER OF REASONS.

SOME OF THEM WERE FILTERED OUT OF THAT PROCESS.

WE'RE IN THE FINAL STAGES OF DISTRIBUTING ALL OF THOSE FUNDS.

UM, AND FOR THIS PROCESS THAT WOULD GIVE US THE B PLUS THIS WAS ALL CASH CASH ASSISTANCE IN ONE FORM OF ANOTHER, THIS WAS EITHER DIRECT FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE TO A BANK ACCOUNT, A VIRTUAL CARD, OR WE'D HAVE TO GO PICK UP A CARD WITH ONE OF OUR NON-PROFITS, UM, TO BE ABLE TO GET ACCESS TO YOUR $2,000.

UM, SO THIS, AGAIN, THIS WAS NOT FIRST COMING TO, THIS WAS A RANDOMIZED PROCESS.

SO EVERYONE HAD AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY, UM, WHO MADE IT THROUGH THE PROCESS TO ACTUALLY BE SELECTED TO RECEIVE IT.

SO HERE'S OUR LESSONS LEARNED OF LIKE, HOW DO YOU TRY TO MAKE IT EASY? HOW DO YOU TRY TO ACCOMMODATE? I THINK WE ALSO, FROM AN AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH PERSPECTIVE, YOU KNOW, WE'RE VERY SENSITIVE TO THE FACT THAT WE KNEW THAT COMMUNITIES OF COLOR WEREN'T SIGNING UP TO GO GET TESTED, WEREN'T SIGNING UP TO DO THESE THINGS.

AND WE HAD AN ONLINE PLATFORM, SO WE KNEW, AND IT WAS IMPORTANT FOR US TO MAKE SURE THAT THERE WAS A PHONE BANK THAT WAS AVAILABLE IN MULTIPLE LANGUAGES THAT WAS OPEN DURING 12 HOURS AND WEEKEND, SO THAT IF PEOPLE WANTED TO CALL, UM, AND AT ANY GIVEN POINT IN TIME DURING THAT TIME THAT IT WAS OPEN, THAT THEY HAD AN OPPORTUNITY TO DO.

SO I'M CURIOUS, THIS IS COMMISSIONER HERE.

SO DID I, I DIDN'T, I'M NOT SURE IF I MISSED IT, BUT DID YOU USE LESS OR TO GIVE YOU STREAMLINE, STREAMLINE WITH THE, UH, NONPROFIT PROVIDERS OR WERE THEY NOT USED, THEN YOU WENT TO A PHONE PROCESS, A PLATFORM I MISSED WHAT CHANGED IN TERMS OF NONPROFIT PARTNER.

SO WE DID END UP DOING SOLICITATION.

WE HAD TWO NONPROFIT PARTNERS, ONE THAT WAS, UH, WAS DOING THE PHONE BANK PROCESS, ONE THAT WAS DOING THE ONLINE APPLICATION PROCESS AND WE WORK WITH THEM AND THEY WORKED TOGETHER TO HAVE KIND OF A COHESIVE PROCESS OR THE COMMUNITY ONGOING COMMUNICATION, UH, BETWEEN THEM, BETWEEN ALL OF US TO MAKE SURE THAT, UH, WE WERE ABLE TO SERVE, UM, THE COMMUNITY AS BEST AS POSSIBLE.

SO THAT DEFINITELY WAS A LEARNING PROCESS TO DATE, UM, OVER, UH, WITH BOTH THE RISE BRIDGE AND THE RISE 2.0 PROCESS 5,328 HOUSEHOLDS HAVE RECEIVED ASSISTANCE.

UM, THIS WAS STRICTLY CASH ASSISTANCE AND OUT OF THE 12 MILLION, WE HAD TO TAKE OUT KIND OF THE ADMIN COST

[00:55:01]

OF A PHONE BANK OR STAFF TIME WHERE ALL OF THOSE OTHER PIECES.

SO IT DIDN'T ALL GO OUT AND FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE, ANY COMMENTS OR QUESTIONS? I HAVE A QUESTION.

ARE YOU ABLE TO COMMENT ON HOW THIS PROGRAM HELPED PEOPLE VERSUS HOW OTHER PROGRAMS HELP? IT'S ONE HAS A MUCH DIFFERENT WAY OF ORGANIZING ITSELF WHEN YOU MEAN HOW HELP PEOPLE WE DO HAVE, UM, WE DON'T HAVE ALL THE DATA YET, BUT WE HAVE OFFERED INDIVIDUALS THAT OPPORTUNITY TO TELL US HOW THIS HELPED THEM.

IT'S NOT MANDATORY.

IT'S NOT IT'S ONCE THEY RECEIVE IT, HOW THEY ANTICIPATED USING THE AWARDS OR HOW THEY RECEIVED THE AWARDS.

UM, I DON'T HAVE THAT INFORMATION, BUT HOPEFULLY WE'LL HAVE THAT INFORMATION AND CAN SHARE IT AT A LATER DATE.

OKAY, GREAT.

DO WE HAVE, UH, ANY MORE QUESTIONS? WELL THEN WITH THAT, UH, NOW THAT WE THANK YOU FOR THIS PRESENTATION, I REALLY APPRECIATE, UH, ITS THOROUGHNESS, UH, AND THE SELF-ASSESSMENT OF, OF BEING, UH, I ALWAYS AM HESITANT TO EVER GRADE, UH, AS A, AS WELL.

AND HERE WE HAVE A PROGRAM WHERE, UH, EVEN EXPENDED, UH, CLEARLY, YOU KNOW, GARGANTUAN SOME, UH, AND ASSESSING YOURSELF AS A BD AND A B FLUFF, UH, WITH LESSONS LEARNED IS ALWAYS SOMETHING THAT, UH, THAT RESONATES VERY MUCH.

AND IF WE COULD, UH, THEN MOVE ON LISA TO THE THIRD SPEAKER, UH, ON AUSTIN ENERGY, AND PLEASE FORGIVE ME THAT I'M NOT FAMILIAR, OR I DON'T KNOW WHO, UH, WHOM THE STAFF MEMBERS ARE, WHO ARE GOING TO BE SPEAKING.

SO I CAN ANNOUNCE YOU BY NAME.

I BELIEVE THAT ERICA IS GOING TO WORK THROUGH THE SLIDE ON THAT ONE, ACTUALLY IT'S NEFERTITI.

YEAH.

WE'RE ACTUALLY GOING TO DO THE RENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM AND THEN SWITCH OVER TO THE AUSTIN ENERGY SLIDE.

GOTCHA.

OKAY.

YEAH.

UM, SO, UH, MY NAME IS NEFERTITI JACKMAN I'M WITH THE HOUSING AND PLANNING DEPARTMENT, AND I'LL BE GIVING SOME UPDATES REGARDING THE RENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM.

UH, THE PROGRAM IS, UH, OFFICIALLY TITLED THE RELIEF OF EMERGENCY NEEDS FOR TENANTS ASSISTANCE PROGRAM.

AND WE BEGAN ON AUGUST 19TH OF THIS YEAR, THE TARGET RECIPIENTS FOR THE PROGRAM.

IT WAS, UH, SPECIFICALLY TO, UH, ASSIST THOSE WHO EXPERIENCED A FINANCIAL HARDSHIP DUE TO COVID 19 AND FINANCIAL LOSS, UH, DUE TO COVID 19, WE HAVE HAD FOCUS OUTREACH SPECIFICALLY TO NEIGHBORHOODS.

UM, LOW-INCOME RESIDENTS.

WE LIST THE VARIOUS ZIP CODES WHERE WE DID TARGETED OUTREACH WITH, UH, FLYERS PARTNERING WITH ORGANIZATIONS TO GET INFORMATION, UM, OUT TO VULNERABLE RESIDENTS, INCLUDING, UH, POPULATIONS WITH LIMITED ENGLISH, PROFICIENCY VETERANS, PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES AND LARGE HOUSEHOLDS, UH, WITH FAMILIES AND CHILDREN.

UH, IN ADDITION TO THAT AFRICAN-AMERICAN AND, UM, ARE BLACK AND LATIN X FAMILIES.

UH, THE RENT FUNDING SOURCES OF, UH, THERE WERE THREE PRIMARY SOURCES OF FUNDINGS, UH, FUNDING, WHICH INCLUDED THE CARES ACT FUNDING, UH, CDBG CV DOLLARS, AS WELL AS THE CITY OF AUSTIN'S GENERAL FUND DOLLARS.

AND THE TOTAL FUNDING FOR THE PROGRAM, UH, IS $12.9 MILLION.

UH, WE ARE STILL IN THE PROCESS OF DEPLOYING THE FUNDS TO DATE, AND I WANT TO BE CLEAR, UH, THE, THE NUMBER THAT YOU HAVE THERE, THE 6.3 MILLION IS THE TOTAL THAT HAS BEEN APPROVED TODAY WITH TOTAL THAT HAS GONE OUT SO FAR AS $6.1 MILLION.

AND SO, UH, WE ANTICIPATE WE'RE, WE'RE SENDING MONEY OUT EACH WEEK.

SO OUR PROGRAM IS AT OVER.

SO THE NUMBERS ARE CHANGING ON A REGULAR BASIS.

UH, WE DO EXPECT THAT THE, UH, FUNDING AS SPECIFICALLY THE CARES FUNDING, THAT'S THE ONLY FUNDING THAT DOES HAVE A DEADLINE OF DECEMBER 30TH.

AND IT IS DECEMBER 30TH, NOT DECEMBER 31ST AS PRESENTED HERE.

UM, BUT WE EXPECT, I EXPECT TO SPEND ALL OF THE FUNDS, UM, BY THAT DEADLINE.

AND, UH, THE SELF-ASSESSMENT, WE DID GIVE OURSELVES

[01:00:01]

AN A, BUT WE DID GIVE AN A MINUS, UH, BECAUSE THERE HAVE BEEN SOME CHALLENGES AND SOME OF THE CHALLENGES THAT WE HAVE EXPERIENCED, UH, DISTRIBUTING THE FUNDING, UM, INCLUDES SOME OF THE THINGS THAT WE HAVE HEARD FROM SOME OF THE PREVIOUS SPEAKERS.

UH, ONE IN PARTICULAR HAS BEEN THE FACT THAT WE ARE IN, UM, A COVID ENVIRONMENT WHERE ORGANIZATIONS AND PLACES WHERE PEOPLE MIGHT NORMALLY GO TO GET ASSISTANCE, HAVE BEEN CLOSED.

UH, SOME OF THE OTHER CHALLENGES, UM, HAS BEEN, UM, THE FACT THAT THERE ARE CERTAIN PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS THAT, UH, WE HAVE PUT IN PLACE, UH, BECAUSE WE ARE DEALING WITH REPORTING FEDERAL DOLLARS AND A LARGE SUM.

SO WE'RE SEEKING TO BE PREPARED.

AND SO AS A RESULT, THE APPLICATION PROCESS, UM, IS NOT AS STREAMLINED AS, UM, AND MANY PEOPLE ARE COMPARING IT TO THE RISE PROGRAM, BUT, UM, SO THAT HAS BEEN ONE CHALLENGE THAT WE'VE EXPERIENCED AND REALLY, UH, HAVING COMMUNITY PARTNERS ON THE GROUND READY TO GO FROM THE BEGINNING OF PROGRAM IMPLEMENTATION WOULD HAVE BEEN EXTREMELY HELPFUL TO MAKE US, UH, UH, THIS PROGRAM, A GREATER SUCCESS, ESPECIALLY HAVING TRUSTED COMMUNITY PARTNERS THAT, UM, YOU KNOW, PEOPLE KNOW, AND ARE ON THE GROUND, UH, AND HAVE RELATIONSHIP, UH, WITH COMMUNITY MEMBERS.

SO I WILL SAY THAT, UH, SOME OF THE INFORMATION THAT WE HAVE TRACKED, UH, WE DID BEGIN TRACKING, UH, WITH THE SECOND, UM, THIS IS THE SECOND ITERATION WE INFORMALLY CALLED THE FIRST RENT PROGRAM, WHICH WE LAUNCHED IN MAY, WHERE WE DEPLOYED APPROXIMATELY $1.2 MILLION, UH, ONE, 1.0, AND THEN THIS ONE RENT 2.0, UM, WE DID TRACK WHERE PEOPLE WERE RECEIVING INFORMATION.

UM, AND SO SOME OF THE QUESTIONS WE ASK OF, YOU KNOW, ARE YOU SEEING IT THROUGH, UH, THE S UH, THE CITY OF ALSO WEBSITE DOOR HANDLES, UH, HANGERS OR SO FORTH? SO WE, WE ARE COLLECTING THAT INFORMATION AND OVER 31 OF, UH, HOUSEHOLDS OR APPLICANTS WHO APPLIED FOR FUNDING SAID THAT THEY HEARD ABOUT THE PROGRAM THROUGH THE CITY OF AUSTIN'S WEBSITE OR SOCIAL MEDIA, WHICH IS THE LARGEST, UM, PERCENTAGE OF RESPONDENTS.

SO, AND THEN THE SECOND NUMBER, THE SECOND LEADING NUMBER IS THROUGH A FRIEND OR FAMILY MEMBER AT JUST OVER 18%.

SO, UH, WE, WE DID THAT AS A WAY TO MAKE SURE THAT WE CAN, UM, FOCUS OUR LIMITED, UM, DOLLARS AND RESOURCES TO MAKE SURE THAT WE'RE REALLY REACHING PEOPLE WHO NEED THE ASSISTANCE.

THAT'S ALL I HAVE.

THANK YOU, NICK, FOR TT.

UH, AND IT'S GOOD TO SEE SLASH HEAR YOU AGAIN AS WELL.

UH, AND, UH, I'D LIKE TO OPEN THE FLOOR TO, UH, THE VICE CHAIR AND ANY COMMISSIONERS FOR, UH, ANY QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS.

OKAY.

IS IT THIS PROGRAM? I THINK IT'S THIS PROGRAM THAT I'VE HEARD INCREASED ITS INCOME CEILING.

CAN YOU COMMENT ON THAT? UM, YES, WE DID NOT INCREASE THE INCOME CEILING, BUT WE DID CHANGE.

UH, UH, INITIALLY WE WERE PROVIDING ONE MONTH OF ASSISTANCE FOR HOUSEHOLDS THAT WERE AT 30% MEDIUM FAMILY INCOME AND BELOW.

UM, BUT WHAT WE DID IS WE CHANGED THE, UH, PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS TO ALLOW ALL FAMILIES, ALL ELIGIBLE PARTICIPANTS AT AS LONG AS THEY'RE UNDER 80% MEDIUM FAMILY INCOME TO BE ELIGIBLE FOR ASSISTANCE UP TO A TOTAL OF SIX MONTHS.

RIGHT.

SO THE INCOME REQUIREMENTS HAVEN'T CHANGED, BUT WE WERE ONLY GIVING, UH, THE WA UH, THREE, MULTIPLE MONTHS TO THOSE AT 30% MFI, BUT WE'VE EXPANDED THAT TO ALL ELIGIBLE PARTICIPANTS.

WELL, I SEE YOU LOOK CONFUSED.

YEAH.

THANK YOU.

I NEVER TD, SORRY.

YOU KNOW, I HAVE NO GAME FACE.

I'M SORRY.

YES, BUT THAT, TO ME SOUNDS EFFECTIVELY LIKE RAISING IT.

I'M CONFUSED.

NO.

SO THE PROGRAM, UM, THE PROGRAM HAS ALWAYS INCLUDED FAMILIES AT 80%, MEDIUM FAMILY INCOME AND BELOW.

SO WE'VE ALWAYS, UH, THE PROGRAM HAS ALWAYS SERVED ANY HOUSEHOLDS THAT DEMONSTRATED THAT THEY HAD BEEN FINANCIALLY IMPACTED BY COVID AS LONG AS THEY WERE AT 80%

[01:05:01]

MEDIAN FAMILY INCOME AND BELOW THE CHANGE WAS THE BENEFIT, WHICH THE PERIOD OF TIME THAT WE ALLOWED ELIGIBILITY WAS FOR THREE MONTHS.

AND WE REALLY WANTED TO GET SOME OF THE MOST VULNERABLE FAMILIES.

AND SO WE WERE REALLY TRYING TO HELP THOSE FAMILIES AT 30% AND BELOW.

BUT WHAT WE SEE, WE SAW THAT THERE WAS A GREATER NEED, EVEN FOR PEOPLE AT 80%.

AND THEN ALSO THERE WAS CONCERN AS TO WHETHER OR NOT WE WOULD BE ABLE TO DEPLOY ALL OF THE DOLLARS.

SO ANYBODY WHO WAS ELIGIBLE AND IT WAS ALWAYS FROM THE BEGINNING 80% MEDIAN FAMILY INCOME, AND BELOW, WE EXPANDED IT TO SIX MONTHS OF RENTAL ASSISTANCE FOR THE ENTIRE DURATION OF THE PROGRAM.

KAREN, UH, DOES THAT HELL YES.

THAT'S A NOISE THAT JUST STARTED IN THE BACKGROUND.

I WAS TRYING TO WAIT FOR IT TO GO AWAY.

UM, SO ARE WE NOT, ARE WE SEEING APPLICANTS BELOW 30%? YOU SAY THAT THE NEED WAS GREATER THAN OTHER INCOME CATEGORIES, BUT WOULD SEEM LIKE PEOPLE BELOW 30% WOULD HAVE THE HARDEST TIME NOW? UH, WE ARE SEEING AN OVER TWO THIRDS TO THE, UH, PEOPLE, UH, GETTING ASSISTANCE ARE AT THAT, UM, INCOME LEVEL LEVEL AT 30%, A MEDIUM FAMILY INCOME AND BELOW, AND WE ARE BEING ABLE TO SERVE THEM.

UM, BUT WE ALSO SAW