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Higgins Announces Over $3.856 Million to Protect Residents in Low-Income Housing

May 1, 2020
Press Release
Federal Relief Provided in CARES Act Approved by Congress

Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) announced federal funding to safeguard residents in low-income housing during the public health crisis.  The CARES Act, approved in the House of Representatives on March 27th included Supplemental Public Housing Operating Funds to support measures to respond to the Coronavirus pandemic in public housing.  Western New York will receive the following:

Recipient COVID-19 Relief
Buffalo Municipal Housing Authority $2,847,061
Niagara Falls Housing Authority $642,001
Lackawanna Municipal Housing Authority $320,542
Kenmore Municipal Housing Authority $46,677
TOTAL $3,856,281

Higgins said, “These additional resources will help local housing authorities cover the additional costs associated with maximizing safety measures in living spaces.”  

The program allows for flexibility; according to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) potential eligible uses of these funds include:

· Personal protective equipment (PPE);

· Cleaning supplies such as disinfectants and sanitizers;

· Contracted services for cleaning;

· Capital expenditures designed to improve the safety of residents such as improved ventilation systems and high-grade filters, portable air filtration equipment, and portable humidifiers;

· Necessary equipment to protect people engaged in modernization activities;

· Public health training;

 · IT equipment and upgrades;

· Sanitation equipment for common areas.

· Staff labor hours for emergency planning and response;

· Transportation of staff to perform essential functions and assist residents.

Recognizing the financial strain on tenants, the CARES Act also imposes a 120-day moratorium beginning on March 27, 2020, on evictions, fees and penalties related to nonpayment of rent.