The funding, made available by the CARES Act (March 27, 2020), will be awarded to PHAs across the U.S.
“HUD is committed to assisting PHAs during this time so that assisted families can stay safe and healthy… Providing these additional funds to PHAs will give them more tools to address local needs and respond to the Coronavirus pandemic as effectively as possible.” –Hunter Kurtz, Assistant Secretary for Public and Indian Housing
These measures are being taken with those under the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) Program in mind. This includes the Mainstream Program which provides tenant-based vouchers that serve households that include a non-elderly person with a disability and serves over 2.4 million families.
“We must do everything in our power to protect all American families from this invisible enemy, including our vulnerable in the Housing Choice Voucher Program… These new flexibilities and additional funds will properly equip Public Housing Authorities across the country with the resources they need to combat this virus.” –Dr. Ben Carson, HUD Secretary
The new eligible coronavirus-related activities include:
Procuring cleaning supplies and/or services to maintain safe and sanitary HCV units, including common areas of PHA-owned Project Based Voucher (PBV) projects.
Relocation of participating families to health units or other designated units for testing, hospitalization, or quarantine, or transportation to these locations to limit the exposure that could be caused by using mass transportation.
Additional costs to supportive services vendors incurred due to coronavirus.
Costs to retain or increase owner participation in the HCV Program, such as incentive or retention costs (e.g. the PHA offers owner an incentive payment to participate in recognition of added difficulties of making units available for HCV families to rent while stay-at-home orders or social distancing practices are in effect).
Costs for providing childcare for the children of PHA staff that would not have otherwise been incurred (e.g. children are at home due to school closings, PHA staff are working outside of regular work schedules, etc).