Tulsa: Emergency Rental Assistance Program To Suspend New Applications After $33.7 Million in Funds Distributed

After administering $33.7 million in rent and utility assistance through one of the United States’ first successful deployments of an Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP), Restore Hope Ministries, the program’s lead administrator in northeast Oklahoma, will suspend new applications starting Sunday, January 30, to ensure all requested assistance is aligned with the program’s funding.

During this time, Restore Hope will continue to process all current applications until contracted allocations from ERA1 and ERA2 have been expended. The city, county and state were awarded $9.5M, $6M and $166M respectively in ERA2 funds. Restore Hope will continue to monitor distributions and funding availability; if additional funding becomes available, a portal will be opened to accept new applications.

To date, the program has helped thousands of people apply and receive critical assistance during the pandemic. More than 7,400 unique households and 3,700 landlords have utilized the funds. The average amount of funding is $4,500 in rental assistance per household.

In addition, Restore Hope is launching a new partnership with Tulsa Responds to aid with applicant communication. The organization will launch a call center along with texting, online chat and email support for applicants and others in need of assistance. Tulsa Responds will help manage the inflow of inquiries and help applicants finalize their documentation to speed up processing. They can also connect people to additional resources.

While Restore Hope is not accepting applications after January 30th, Community Cares Partners is continuing to accept applications for the Emergency Rental Assistance Program. More information is available at: https://okccp.org/.

ERAP_Funds Suspended+Applicant FAQ_FINAL.pdf
ERAP_Funds Suspended General FAQ_FINAL(1).pdf
ERAP_Funds Suspended General FAQ_FINAL.pdf
ERAP_Funds Suspended Applicant FAQ_SPANISH.pdf

Tulsa Housing Choice Voucher Training Opportunity

Join Tulsa Housing Authority for an upcoming Housing Choice Voucher virtual landlord chat and Q&A session! The event will take place Monday, January 31st at 10:30 a.m.

THA staff will be available to answer any questions and address any issues you’d like to discuss. While this will be an open discussion, feel free to submit any questions or topics you would like to ensure we discuss in advance.

If you would like to participate, please send an email to lynn.james or diana.clay to RSVP!

Bills and Joint Resolutions Filed for Upcoming Legislative Session

Oklahoma’s Legislative Session is quickly approaching and last Thursday was the deadline to file any bill or joint resolution to be heard in the 2022 Legislative Session. A total of 2,350 new bills and joint resolutions were filed for possible consideration in the 2022 Legislative Session and 1,600 of those were filed on the day of the deadline.

In the House, a total of 1,482 bills, 18 resolutions and two concurrent resolutions were filed. There were 774 Senate bills and 23 Senate Joint Resolutions filed.

First day of session is Monday, February 7th.

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Tulsa: Landlord’s Cost of Eviction Survey

The Tulsa Authority for Economic Opportunity and Housing Solutions have launched a survey to collect data on the costs incurred by landlords during eviction. From ​filing an eviction to preparing a unit to be leased, ​landlords have many costs throughout the eviction process. This survey aims to bring together the input of landlords throughout the City of Tulsa to assess just how much these costs add up to in Tulsa.

If you are a landlord or property manager in Tulsa, please fill out this survey. Your response is essential to ensuring we accurately capture the experiences and costs faced by landlords. Please note that this survey is completely anonymous. We appreciate your participation, and if you know of other landlords or property managers who may be able to provide feedback, please feel free to share this survey with them. Thank you!

https://forms.office.com/Pages/ResponsePage.aspx?id=4IrVeUggjE2cWYsbfftCBIaIr3jkM2REmlNR5RNZyE1URTc3Q0M1MzQxSUQ2UTRJTk1ER0FNVElMOS4u

Tulsa: Next Information Session for the Affordable Housing Trust Fund is February 3rd

The next virtual information session on the Tulsa Affordable Housing Trust Fund is scheduled for February 3, 2022 at 12pm.

The Affordable Housing Trust Fund is a city-wide fund for production and preservation of affordable housing through affordable rental housing development loans as well as grants for homebuyer assistance, landlord incentives, and rental assistance programs to further the City of Tulsa’s mission to create quality housing opportunities for all Tulsans that respect and honor the unique needs and characteristics of each neighborhood and its residents.

For landlords and developers, the Affordable Housing Trust Fund provides gap financing in the form of zero interest loans for new construction, rehabilitation and preservation projects to increase the stock of affordable rental housing in Tulsa. For example, TAEO approved a $187,000 Affordable Housing Trust Fund development loan to HBSY Properties for the rehabilitation of 10 affordable housing projects in North Tulsa this year. HBSY Properties, a local developer with ties to the North Tulsa community, will receive the funds as reimbursements for individual housing projects. To learn more about the Affordable Housing Trust Fund development loan to HBSY, watch this brief video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n31h2Kys7RE

If you are interested in applying to the Affordable Housing Trust Fund, you must attend an information session or view a recording of an information session prior to submitting an application. Register in advance for this webinar: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_54pUbqNuQrejHYauoC2leA. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

OHFA Encourages Developers to Apply for National Housing Trust Fund

The Oklahoma Housing Finance Agency (OHFA) has announced $1.5 million remaining in the National Housing Trust Fund program for 2021. Developers are encouraged to apply.

Applications are due March 1st and will be considered at the May 25, 2022 meeting of the OHFA’s Board of Trustees.

The National Housing Trust Fund preserves and increases the supply of affordable rental housing for individuals and families whose incomes do not exceed 30% of Area Median Income, or the poverty level, whichever is greater.

For more information, please see visit: https://www.ohfa.org/national-housing-trust-fund/

NHTF Fact Sheet.pdf

Pandemic Relief Infuses Funds For Affordable Housing On Reservation

The Salish and Kootenai Housing Authority in Montana plans to use pandemic relief funds to build about as many homes in the next year as it has in the past 25. It has struggled to provide much-needed affordable housing the Indian Housing Block Grant, which was created to fund affordable housing on tribal reservations. “I haven’t counted, but I would bet at least 50 families or individuals will be housed because of this money,” said Jody Perez, executive director of the Salish and Kootenai Housing Authority.

Low-Income NYC Neighborhoods Are Hotter Than Wealthy Ones

Data from New York City show there was at least a 7-degree temperature difference between the South Bronx—one of the poorest neighborhoods in New York City—and the Upper East Side of Manhattan, one of the wealthiest. These data are crucial to understanding where and who is most affected by climate change and how communities can target resources toward reducing temperature. “As community members who actually fight for justice, and social justice, and environmental justice, we can now say, ‘There is actual data that says, we breathe different air.’ There is actual data that says, ‘We see and feel heat differently than everywhere else’,” said Melissa Barber, founder of activist organization South Bronx Unite.

Las Vegas Is Working To Close The Black Homeownership Gap

In the Las Vegas metropolitan area, the Black homeownership rate was 33 points lower than it was for white households in 2019 due to historic and ongoing discrimination that have contributed to disparities in factors such as availability of credit. To close the gap, the Make Homes Possible program, a coalition of Las Vegas organizations and community leaders, will help 25,000 Black families buy homes over the next decade. “We’ve counseled hundreds of people so far. Our numbers are small now, but that’s because we’re gearing people up to put them in the homeownership pipeline,” said Shanta Patton-Golar, leader of the Make Homes Possible coalition.

Research Finds Unpredictable Work Schedules Increase Material Hardship

An article published in Social Forces, “Hard Times: Routine Schedule Unpredictability and Material Hardship among Service Sector Workers,” examines the association between unpredictability in work schedules and household material hardship. The authors, Daniel Schneider and Kristen Harknett, found that workers who experience schedule unpredictability are more likely to experience hunger and housing, medical, and utility hardships.