SAN ANTONIO – San Antonio’s Emergency Housing Assistance Program has helped 37,000 households during the pandemic with rental, mortgage, and utility assistance, city officials say, calling the program a success.
The city created the program in April 2020 in response to the job losses incurred during the wide-ranging shutdowns.
“We’re still seeing a need for families that are suffering and unable to really catch up on the rental and mortgage payments or utility payments,” said Edward Gonzales, assistant director for the city’s Neighborhood and Housing Services Department
Gonzales said the program received $133.5 million in funding, and the city has approximately $19.5 million remaining to help families.
To qualify for the program, applicants must prove hardship and earn less than 80% of the area median income. Gonzales said that’s about $57,000 a year for a family of four.
“We are anticipating to receive additional funds, and we hope to see those funds and take those funds to council in early June,” Gonzales said.
San Antonio resident Rene Hill, who says the program changed his life, had many jobs before the pandemic began. He did plumbing, car detailing, pressure washing, but the shutdowns changed all that.
Hill said he couldn’t find work and applied to the program for help.
“They helped me pay my rent. They gave me $9,000. Seven thousand to my landlord, $1,000 to my light and the rest went to the water,” Hiller said.