Texas Department of Community Affairs, Texas Housing Agency, and Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs:
An Inventory of Records at the Texas State Archives, 1972-2001
Texas Department of Community Affairs, 1971-1991
The Texas Department of Community Affairs was an outgrowth of the former Division of State-Local Relations in the Governor's Office. The Department of Community Affairs was established in 1971 (Senate Bill 80, 62nd Legislature, Regular Session; amended by Senate Bill 315, 68th Legislature, Regular Session, 1983) to assist Texas communities in achieving solutions to economic and social problems and improving the effectiveness of local government. It coordinated federal and state programs affecting local governments and informed state officials as to the needs of local government. The Department was administered by an executive director appointed by the governor. The Department also received input from an Advisory Council composed of twelve individuals: three elected or appointed municipal officials, three county officials, three elected or appointed officials from other kinds of political subdivisions, and three citizen members.
In 1973, the Legislature (House Bill 845, 63rd Legislature, Regular Session) authorized the Department to establish multi-purpose human resource centers in various communities and established a special fund in the State Treasury to finance the program. With the passage of the R.B. McAllister Drug Treatment Program Act (House Bill 1209, 66th Legislature, Regular Session, 1979), the Department was to establish a drug dependence treatment program. Prior to 1991, this program disappeared. In 1991, the Department of Community Affairs was merged with the Texas Housing Agency to create the Department of Housing and Community Affairs (Senate Bill 546, 72nd Legislature, Regular Session). After this merger, the Advisory Council was dissolved.
During its twenty-year existence, the Department administered a number of programs to alleviate poverty; to provide training and leadership to the unemployed, children, and youth; and to prevent drug abuse. These programs included the Model Cities Program and Community Development Program, the Public Employment Program, the Public Services Career Program, and the State Program on Drug Abuse. Other programs provided food and nutrition to underprivileged children; shelter for the homeless, the handicapped, and Low-income individuals and families; funds to local agencies addressing poverty issues; dependent care and child care services; and, assistance in paying utility bills and weatherizing homes.
Texas Housing Agency, 1979-1991
The Texas Housing Agency was created in 1979 (Senate Bill 296, 66th Legislature, Regular Session; amended by House Bill 2350, 67th Legislature, Regular Session, 1981) to encourage private capital investment in Low-income residential housing and to stimulate the acquisition, construction, and rehabilitation of such housing through the use of supplemental public financing and construction and mortgage loans. Another purpose of the agency was to purchase mortgages and to otherwise support expanded housing opportunities for low- and moderate-income families. On September 1, 1991, the Texas Housing Agency was merged with the Texas Department of Community Affairs, creating the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs (Senate Bill 546, 72nd Legislature, Regular Session).
The policymaking body of the Texas Housing Agency was a nine-member board, appointed by the governor with concurrence of the senate for overlapping six-year terms. Members had to be qualified voters and hold no other public office. The board had to be composed of at least one member experienced in each of the following fields: housing development administration, commercial banking, real estate operations, home building, apartment construction/ownership, mortgage banking, savings and loan association operation, municipal or county government, and housing problems of persons and families of low and moderate income. These were non-salaried positions, and the governor designated the chair.
The duties of the board included approving all bonds issued by the Agency, approving all managers and co-managers for the agency bond issues, selecting the executive administrator, approving the agency budget, overseeing the agency's administrations and programs, and formulating rules for the agency's programs under the umbrella of federal guidelines.
Much of the Housing Agency's business was conducted by a variety of rapidly changing committees, including the following: Audit, Internal Audit, Finance and Audit, Finance and Planning, Personnel, Personnel and Planning, Personnel and Programs, Planning and Legislative, Programs and Legislation, Program Operations, Programs, Multi-Family, Single Family, [Low-income] Tax Credit (Ad Hoc); plus a number of briefly functioning ad hoc committees (To Gather Information on Mullins Dispute, To Review Committee Structure, Executive Administrator Search, Bond Counsel and Financial Advisor Selection, Personnel Search, Sunset, etc.).
Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs, 1991-[ongoing]
The Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs (TDHCA) was created on September 1, 1991 under the authority of Senate Bill 546, 72nd Legislature, Regular Session (amended by Senate Bill 1356, 73rd Regular Session, 1993) by consolidating the Texas Housing Agency and the Texas Department of Community Affairs. The creation of the single agency consolidated housing programs and provided local governments with better access to state coordination and aid in the provision of public services.
The TDHCA is Texas' lead agency responsible for affordable housing, community development and community assistance programs, and regulation of the state's manufactured housing industry. Much of the business of the agency is conducted in meetings of a number of special committees: the Audit Committee, the Finance Committee, the (Ad Hoc) Low-income Housing Tax Credit Committee, the Programs Committee, and the Manufactured Housing Committee (beginning April 1996). In addition, beginning January 1995, the Texas State Affordable Housing Corporation Board has been affiliated with the agency.
The policy-making body of the agency is a nine-member board appointed by the governor, with concurrence of the senate, for overlapping six-year terms. The board must be composed of four members with experience in housing and finance, one member from local government, one member representing low-income persons, and three members from the general public.
The Department annually administers funds in excess of $380 million (fiscal year 1998), the overwhelming majority of which is derived from mortgage revenue bond financing and refinancing, federal grants and federal tax credits.
Community Affairs Division
This Division, and that of Housing Finance, were mandated by the legislation creating TDHCA in 1991, with the provision that their funds were to be managed separately. This division was to administer community services, energy assistance, rental assistance, and local government services programs. Most of the functions of the former Department of Community Affairs are now the responsibility of the Community Affairs Division. The Division has three major sections: the Community Services Section, the Energy Assistance Section, and the Local Government Services Section (LGS).
The Community Services Section administers federal and state grants to assist local agencies in providing services to those Texans defined as poor or homeless. During FY 1997, the Program assisted 379,440 poor and/or homeless individuals, 529 of whom achieved incomes above the poverty line. Funds come from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, and the State General Revenue and Oil Overcharge funds. The grant programs administered by Community Services Section are as follows:
Community Services Block Grant (CSBG):
The State of Texas assumed responsibility for the Community Services Block Grant (CSBG) program in 1983. Since that time, the Department has expended in excess of $217 million dollars from the CSBG and its management of these funds has been well reviewed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The CSBG funds 51 Community Action Agencies for the delivery of services to very Low-income Texans in all 254 counties. These funds, provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, support a variety of direct services in addition to helping maintain the core administrative elements of these local organizations. Funding also is provided to organizations serving Native American and migrant and seasonal farm workers, and for various other projects. In FY 1997, the state received $23,716,850 and assisted 270,915 persons. For FY 1998, the state received $23,615,765.
Community Food and Nutrition Program (CFNP):
The Community Food and Nutrition Program (CFNP) supports a statewide publication detailing hunger-related issues, programs to promote greater use of surplus crops for feeding the poor, and a marketing effort designed to increase the flow of federal funds to Texas for the Summer Food Service program benefiting school-aged children. Funding is provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. For FY 1997, funding totaled $186,169 and was provided to the Texas Association of Community Action Agencies (TACAA). Funding for FY 1998 was expected to be $186,169.
Emergency Shelter Grants Program (ESGP):
The Emergency Shelter Grants Program (ESGP) is a competitive grant administered by the Texas Department of Community Affairs from 1987 to 1991 and thereafter by TDHCA. The program provides funds to cities, counties, and non-profit organizations for activities relating to shelter and services for homeless persons and the prevention of homelessness. Funding for this grant comes from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. In FY 1997, the Department received $3,523,000, funded 58 projects, and assisted 67,584 persons. For FY 1998, the Department received $5,058,000.
Texas Homeless Network (THN):
The Texas Homeless Network (THN) provides information, resources, and technical assistance to organizations providing services to the homeless population. TDHCA and MHMR (Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation) have been partners with THN since 1992 when the Texas Interagency Council for the Homeless recommended that THN serve as a central homeless information resource center for non-profit service providers in Texas.
Office for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth (OEHCY):
OEHCY, located at the University of Texas at Austin, provides assistance to any student experiencing homelessness who is having difficulty enrolling in, attending, or succeeding in school.
The Permanent Housing for Disabled Homeless Persons (PHP):
The program provides assistance to develop innovative approaches to providing permanent housing to homeless individuals with disabilities. In 1997, the Department administered three contracts and provided approximately $35,740 to contractors, providing 23 homeless disabled persons with permanent housing.
Emergency Nutrition/Temporary Emergency Relief Program (ENTERP):
The Emergency Nutrition/Temporary Emergency Relief Program (ENTERP) is a program that provides emergency assistance and energy-related assistance to low and very low-income persons. ENTERP assistance is provided by county governments or non-profit organizations serving each Texas county. This program is funded with General Revenue and Oil Overcharge funds from the State. In FY 1997, the Department provided $1,394,108 for ENTERP contractors who served 40,924 persons. For FY 1998, the Department received $1,589,097.
The 1991 legislation founding TDHCA mandated the inclusion of energy assistance programs in the Community Affairs Division. The Energy Assistance Section of the Community Affairs Division currently administers the following programs:
Weatherization Assistance Program For Low-income Persons (WAP):
WAP is designed to promote energy efficiency in the residences of Low-income people through minor home repairs and energy education. The Program is administered through local community action agencies, local governmental entities and other non-profit organizations in all 254 counties of the state. Recipients must be households whose income is at or below 125 percent of the federal income guidelines, or households containing one member who has received cash assistance payments under Title IV or XVI of the Social Security Act. WAP is authorized by Part A of the Energy Conservation in Existing Buildings Act of 1976, as amended (42 US. Sec. 6861 et seq.) and Texas Government Code Sections 2305.036 and 2306.097. While the Program is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Program follows the U.S. Department of Energy regulations codified in 10 CFR Part 440 and 600. In 1983, the State Legislature transferred the WAP to the Department of Community Affairs (House Bill 651, 68th Legislature, Regular Session) from which it passed into the TDHCA.
Comprehensive Energy Assistance Program (CEAP):
CEAP is a utility assistance program authorized by the Low-income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP): 42 U.S.C. Sec. 8621 et seq. and the Texas Government Code Sections 2305.035 and 2306.097. The Program is funded by U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and governed by the LIHEAP statute and the regulations set forth by HHS and the TDHCA. The Department currently has 151 open contracts which provide WAP services and CEAP services to all 254 counties in Texas. In 1993, the State Legislature transferred the LIHEAP grants to the Department (Senate Bill 1356, 73rd Legislature, Regular Session, 1993 (?)).
The CEAP involves integration of all LIHEAP funded programs thereby enhancing efficiency and effectiveness of services provided to clients and eliminating duplication of services. The objectives of this program are: 1) to address the needs of the household in developing goals for self-sufficiency through case management, education and a co-payment utility plan; 2) to provide relief to those Low-income elderly households most vulnerable to the high cost of energy for home heating and cooling; 3) to provide assistance in an energy-related crisis; and 4) replacement, repair and/or retrofit of inefficient heating and/or cooling systems. Recipients must be households whose income is at or below 125 percent of the federal income guidelines. There is no categorical eligibility and CEAP benefits are based on need.
Native American Restitutionary Program (NARP):
This program provides energy-related assistance to the Alabama-Coushatta Reservation and the Traditional Kickapoo Tribe of Texas. NARP provides utility assistance and weatherization assistance services to individual households and funds installation of energy conservation measures in community facilities. Recipients must be tribal members.
NARP is authorized by the Governor and Texas Government Code Sec.2305.037. While this program was transferred to the General Services Commission effective September 1, 1995, pursuant to Senate Bill 1020 (74th Legislature, Regular Session), the Department has continued to administer the Program. The Program is funded in total from Oil Overcharge Funds with the last allocation in 1994 for $652,629. Recently, the balance was $11,239 and, as no additional funds are anticipated, the program seems likely to cease. The Program rules were developed by the Department and approved by the U.S. Department of Energy Stripperwell Panel. The two NARP contracts cover the reservations of the Alabama-Coushatta tribe and the Traditional Kickapoo of Texas.
The partnerships are programs whereby utilities "piggy-back" Demand Side Management (energy conservation) programs onto the Department's operated programs. These programs operate in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Low-income Home Energy Assistance Program and the U.S. Department of Energy-funded state Weatherization Assistance Program. Services include, but are not limited to: additional funds for weatherization activities; compact fluorescent lightbulbs lease-purchase programs; refrigerator and air-conditioner lease-purchase programs; and, water-flow restrictors (low-flow shower heads and faucet aerators) provided free of charge. Participants must be at or below 125 percent of the Office of Management Budget federal poverty guidelines, be customer of the particular utility and must be receiving weatherization services or be LIHEAP energy assistance benefits recipients. The Department has operated partnership programs with Texas Utilities Electric Company, Southwest Public Service Company and Central Power and Light Company.
The Local Government Services Section (LGS) was established in 1971 when the 61st Texas Legislature created the Texas Department of Community Affairs. The Division was moved to the Department in 1991 when the 72nd Legislature merged the Texas Housing Agency and the Texas Department of Community Affairs. LGS is a section of three staff members trained and experienced in the areas of local government management and public administration. The LGS section is funded with state of Texas General Revenue Funds; funding for FY 1997 totaled $248,650.
LGS assists local officials in providing essential public services and in resolving financial, social, and environmental problems in their community. The Program conducts workshops and provides technical assistance, information and publications on topics pertinent to local government, such as municipal planning and budget and financial management. LGS targets cities and counties in rural areas with a population under 10,000. Training is provided primarily through workshops conducted in conjunction with regional councils of governments. On-site technical assistance is also provided as needed. In addition to training, LGS provides information, advice and advocacy to and for local governments. LGS staff responds to questions relating to almost all areas of local government. Services are targeted to small towns and rural counties that have very limited resources and staff. The training and information assists elected officials to fulfill their legal responsibilities in an efficient and effective manner.
Community Development Block Grant Division
The Division administers the federal block grant that assists local governments in developing viable communities. The grant is administered through six funds transferred from the Texas Department of Commerce. The Community Development Fund addresses community infrastructure needs and housing assistance. The Colonia Fund is available to severely distressed unincorporated areas within 150 miles of the Texas-Mexico border. The Planning/Capacity Building Fund provides for activities that assess local community planning needs and develop strategies to improve local capacity. The Disaster Relief/Urgent Need Fund is available as needed for state or federal disaster declaration or for an urgent need situation within the applicant's jurisdiction. The Housing (Demonstration) Fund provides grants for the development or rehabilitation of single and multi-family housing for low to moderate income individuals and families. Through 1996, the Texas Capital Fund sponsored economic development projects that created or retained permanent employment opportunities. By at least 1999, it had been replaced by the Small Towns Environment Program (STEP) Fund, which provides grant assistance to cities and communities willing to employ self-help techniques to water and sewer problems.
Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program:
CDBG is governed by Title I of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974 (the Act) and Federal regulations at 24 CFR 570, Subpart I. The Program is funded through the U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The introduction of the CDBG program in 1974 signaled a move away from individual categorized federal development assistance programs towards the block grant model which gives communities broad latitude in using funds for a variety of development activities, as long as they comply with some general, federal guidelines. The Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1981 authorized states to administer the CDBG programs. According to statute, the primary objective of the CDBG program is to develop viable communities by providing decent housing and suitable living environments, and expanding economic opportunities principally for persons of low and moderate income. CDBG program transferred from the Department of Community Affairs to the Department of Commerce when it was created in 1987, in 1991 the program was transferred to the newly created TDHCA.
CDBG is comprised of two distinct programs: (1) the "Entitlement Program" which provides formula-allocated funding to metropolitan cities with populations over 50,000 and to qualified urban counties with non-metropolitan populations over 200,000; and (2) the "Non-entitlement" or "States and Small Cities Program" which provides federal funds directly to states which, in turn, provide funds on a competitive and as-needed basis to small, non-metropolitan cities with populations less than 50,000, and to counties that are not eligible for entitlement status.
Texas Community Development Program (TCDP):
TDHCA, through the Texas Community Development Program (TCDP), administers the Texas "Non-entitlement" CDBG program for non-metropolitan cities and counties throughout the State. The Texas Community Development Program (TCDP) is the largest in the nation. In FY 1998, the State was awarded $83,931,000. The program serves approximately 1,032 eligible rural communities, 246 rural counties, and provides services to over 375,000 beneficiaries each year. Because of limited CDBG funds, TDHCA is only able to fund about one-third of the applications received from eligible communities each year.
Of the 1,032 cities eligible for TCDP funds, 769 have a population of less than 3,000 and 462 have a population of less than 1,000. The program focuses on providing basic human needs and sanitary infrastructure to small rural communities in outlying areas. Eligible projects include sanitary sewer systems, clean drinking water, disaster relief and urgent need projects, housing, drainage and flood control, passable streets, economic development, and community centers.
Since the State of Texas assumed responsibility for the program in 1983, TCDP has expended almost $800 million ($777,380,392.00). The Department recently administered 1,237 open contracts totaling $340,768,031 in TCDP funds, with an additional $301,373,869 in leveraged funds, in providing services to 1,596,616 beneficiaries.
Housing Finance Division
This Division, and that of Community Affairs, were mandated by the legislation creating TDHCA in 1991, with the provision that their funds were to be managed separately. The Division took on the majority of the duties of the former Texas Housing Agency, administering programs that have helped low to moderate income individuals and families buy their first homes through the First Time Homebuyer Program, the Down Payment Assistance Program, the Home Construction and Acquisition Loan Program, the Contract for Deed Refinance Program, and the Single Family Interim Construction Program. The First Time Homebuyer Program offers mortgage financing at an interest rate that is typically below the market rate. The Down Payment Assistance Program provides interest free loans to pay for down payments and closing costs. The Multifamily Bond Programs finance the acquisition or development of affordable rental units. The Home Construction and Acquisition Loan Program and the Contract for Deed Refinance Program were transferred to the Office of Colonia Initiatives when it was created in 1996.
By 1999, the Housing Finance Division was responsible for structuring, administering and monitoring the Department's Mortgage Revenue Bond (MRB) programs. The MRB programs provide below market interest rate funds for single family and multifamily mortgage loans made to qualifying recipients. The Department's authority to issue MRBs is derived from its enabling legislation and provisions of the Internal Revenue Code. The MRB programs utilize no General Revenue of the State and create no liability to the State of Texas. After the Bond Finance area of the Housing Finance Division completes a single family bond transaction, the Department administers the program and monitors its progress. The Financial Services Division, the Bond Finance area and the Bond Compliance and Disclosure Section monitor the financial status of the bonds and perform all responsibilities of the Department in accordance with the legal bond documents created as part of the issuance process. The Compliance and Monitoring Division monitors tax compliance of all multifamily properties. These monitoring and compliance functions are crucial and are required by the bond documents to ensure the tax-exempt status and rating of the bonds.
Housing Programs Division
The Division, formerly called Housing Development, administers the HOME Investment Partnership Program, the Low-income Housing Tax Credit Program, the Housing Trust Fund, and Section 8.
The Program, established by Congress in 1990, provides multi-year housing strategies for "participating jurisdictions" (PJs) to strengthen public-private partnerships and provide more affordable housing via block grants. PJs are units of government so designated by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). In general, many of the larger cities and counties in Texas are PJs in their own right. TDHCA receives a statewide block grant of HOME funds for areas of the state which have not received a separate PJ status from HUD. Allocations are made on an annual basis by formulae based on several criteria: number of substandard rental units, per capita income levels, number of families at or below the poverty level, and cost of housing within a region. Under HUD guidelines, HOME funds are reserved for people at or below 80 percent (80%) of Average Median Family Income (AMFI) for an area. TDHCA awards contracts through a competitive application process for specific amounts to various municipalities, non-profit agencies, for profit and public housing agencies around the state to administer program activities for HOME eligible recipients.
HOME regulations allow for a variety of housing activities, all aimed at providing safe, decent affordable housing to low-income families. TDHCA has allocated funds to grantees in five basic housing activities: Homebuyer Assistance Program; Rental Housing Development Program; Owner-Occupied Housing Assistance Program; Tenant-Based Rental Assistance Program; and Interim Construction Program. Additionally, the HOME Program operates the HOME Demonstration Fund in which the HOME Program participates with other TDHCA divisions such as the Low-income Housing Tax Credit Program, Weatherization Assistance Program and the Single Family Loan Program. The Demonstration Fund also contains a small amount of funding for emergency projects, innovative projects and direct awards. TDHCA must set aside fifteen percent (15%) of the total allocation for Community Housing Development Organizations (CHDOs). The Department also reserves ten percent (10%) for special needs, which includes the homeless, Low-income elderly, frail elderly, persons with disabilities, and persons with AIDS and AIDS-related diseases.
Since the HOME Program's inception in 1992, TDHCA has awarded in excess of $190 million for more than 450 contracts. Through the administration of these contracts, the HOME programs assist over 15,000 Texas families. The 2000 HOME allocation is estimated to be $34,000,000.
Housing Trust Fund:
The Fund was established by the 72nd Legislature (Senate Bill 546, Regular Session, 1991), to create affordable housing for low and very low-income individuals and families. It is the only state authorized affordable housing program. Funding sources consist of appropriations or transfers made to the fund, unencumbered fund balances and public and private gifts or grants. The Trust Fund is a statewide program that seeks to allocate funds to achieve a broad geographical distribution of affordable housing. It also provides technical assistance and capacity building to non-profit organizations and CHDOs engaged in developing affordable housing for persons and families of low and very low-income. Funds are available to non-profit organizations, units of local government, public housing authorities, community housing development organizations (CHDOs), and income eligible individuals and families. Eligible activities include acquisition, rehabilitation, and new construction of housing. Since its first funding round in 1993, the Housing Trust Fund has awarded almost $12 million in grants and loans, leveraging $28.5 million, to fund more than 2,600 low and very-low-income housing units. Approximately 10 percent of all program funds are set aside for capacity building and technical assistance.
A Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) is published in the Texas Register announcing when the Housing Trust Fund is able to make funds available. There is generally one funding cycle annually, though the program is not limited to one cycle. The Department selects a diverse group of projects through a competitive funding process. Applicants must demonstrate how the project addresses an identified affordable housing need, and must provide evidence of financial feasibility as well as their ability to complete the project successfully. Although no matching funds are required, the program encourages leveraging. The program also encourages projects which address very low-income, rural, and special needs populations.
The Housing Trust Fund, along with the CDBG Program, has partnered to open an East Texas Regional Technical Assistance Center in Lufkin, Texas. This center will provide services to 28 counties in East Texas. The Department also operates a West Texas regional office in Lubbock, Texas.
Low-income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) Program
The Credit Program was created by the federal Tax Reform Act of 1986, and was first utilized by the real estate development community during calendar year 1987. Section 42 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended (the Code), is the federal law that governs the LIHTC program. It authorizes tax credits in the amount of $1.25 per capita for each state. The Department had approximately $22.3 million in tax credits in the 1998 state housing credit ceiling.
The tax credit program is the primary means of directing private capital towards the creation of affordable rental housing. The tax credits provide developers of low-income rental housing with a benefit that is used to offset a portion of their federal tax liability in exchange for the production of affordable rental housing. Since 1987, when the program was managed by the Texas Housing Agency, the LIHTC program has provided more than $145.8 million in tax credits that are projected to produce more than 67,300 apartment units throughout the state of Texas. The amount of tax credits for which a project owner is eligible is determined by the amount of qualified development costs to be incurred and the percentage of low-income units set aside within a development that meet the applicable federal requirements for both tenant income and maximum rental rates.
Pursuant to the Code, a qualified low-income housing project means any project for residential rental occupancy if the project meets either of the following requirements: twenty percent (20%) or more of the residential units in such project are both rent restricted and occupied by individuals whose income is fifty percent (50%) or less AMFI; or forty percent (40%) or more of the residential units in such project are both rent restricted and occupied by individuals whose income is sixty percent (60%) or less of AMFI.
Pursuant to Section 42 of the Code, the Department must develop a plan for the selection of eligible projects based on broad guidelines designed to provide housing for the Low-income tenants. Applications are received by the Department and evaluated under such a plan at least once a year. The Department recommends an allocation of credits based on many factors, such as geographic location, type of housing, the concentration of Low-income projects within specific markets or sub-markets, site conditions, the experience of the development team and/or the project's impact on the goals and objectives of the program. These recommendations are presented to the Department's governing board for approval. At least ten percent (10%) of the state allocation is set-aside for qualified non-profit organizations. The projected funding for 1997 was $24 million and the total number of households expected to be served was 4,800. All areas of the state are eligible for funding.
The federal Housing and Community Development Act of 1974 authorized the Housing Assistance Payments Program (Section 8). Section 8 provides rental assistance to Low-income families, elderly, disabled, and handicapped individuals. This program provides financial assistance to eligible families whose annual gross income does not exceed 50% of HUD's median income guidelines. Section 8 is designed specifically for needy families in small cities and rural communities not served by similar local or regional programs. According the Texas State Data Center, by the year 2000, 27 percent of all households will need some sort of housing assistance.
Funds for Section 8 are provided by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's three field offices in Houston, Dallas/Ft. Worth and San Antonio. If a community is interested in utilizing Section 8, the local unit of government must adopt a resolution agreeing to administer the program in accordance with all applicable rules and regulations. A request for additional funding is then submitted to HUD on behalf of the requesting community. The Department's Community Affairs Division, Section 8 Program, currently contracts with 39 small cities and six Community Action Agencies that administer the program locally. The program has grown from 100 certificates to more than 1,600 certificates and vouchers in 39 counties since 1979.
Manufactured Housing Division
Effective September 1, 1995, in accordance with House Bill 785 passed during the 74th Texas Legislature (Regular Session), the regulation of manufactured housing was transferred from the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) to the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs (TDHCA). The National Manufactured Housing Construction and Safety Standards Act of 1974 (the Act) assigns the responsibility of administering the Act to the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD). Federal law makes provision for the states to participate in the enforcement of the Act. Over the years, the Texas Legislature has chosen various levels of state involvement. TDHCA administers parts of the Act on behalf of HUD. As such, TDHCA is the State Administrative Agency (SAA) for the State of Texas. Currently, TDHCA administers parts of the Act which involve: monitoring manufacturers' performance in handling consumer complaints; searching for and, when warranted, initiating class action cases; and performing post-production monitoring of manufactured homes produced and/or shipped to Texas.
TDHCA's Manufactured Housing Division administers the Texas Act which ensures that manufactured homes are well-constructed and safe, that homes are installed correctly, that consumers are provided fair and effective remedies, and that measures are taken to provide economic stability for the Texas manufactured housing industry. Currently, the Manufactured Housing Division headquarters is located in Austin with eight field offices throughout Texas. The field offices are located in Corpus Christi, Dallas/Fort Worth, Edinburg, El Paso, Houston, Lubbock, San Antonio, Tyler, and Waco.
Work performed by the manufactured housing division includes: providing forms, documents, and assistance with filing the proper documents; issuing and canceling titles; conducting titling research; providing training and issuing licenses to individuals who desire to be a manufactured housing manufacturer, retailer, rebuilder, installer, broker, or salesperson; recording and releasing tax and mortgage liens; conducting installation inspections; receiving, investigating, tracking, and resolving consumer complaints; investigating and taking appropriate action against violators of the Texas Manufactured Housing Standards Act; and performing federal oversight responsibilities under a cooperative agreement with HUD.
Manufactured home titles are issued through the Manufactured Housing Division. The official state titling data base is maintained, operated, and managed by the Division. The Division issues various types of titles, cancels titles, and issues certificates of attachment. Additionally, the Division records tax and mortgage liens and releases liens; and processes title searches monthly and documents a creditor-lender's security interest in manufactured homes.
Manufacturers, retailers, installers, brokers, salvage/rebuilders, and salespersons must be licensed with the Department to legally do business in Texas.
Customer assistance is provided for the general public, industry, and others who desire information on manufactured housing titles, license holders, and other operations of the Department.
The Division has broad oversight responsibilities to ascertain each manufacturer's compliance in handling consumer complaints, searching for and initiating class action cases when there is evidence that a particular problem is or may be wide-spread, and performing post-production monitoring of manufactured homes produced and/or installed in Texas. Consumer complaints received by manufacturers are tracked and investigated by the Manufactured Housing Division. Standards and requirements for the installation of manufactured homes are established by TDHCA. The collection of these standards and requirements is the Texas Manufactured Housing Code. Division staff and other contracted personnel inspect the installation of manufactured homes in order to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the occupants and the public.
If the consumer is not satisfied with the response of a retailer or manufacturer to a complaint, the consumer can file a complaint with the Manufactured Housing Division.
The Division investigates and takes appropriate action against violators of the Texas Act, Department rules, and HUD regulations/rules governing manufactured housing.
Office of Colonia Initiatives
The term Colonia is a Spanish term for neighborhood or community. A colonia is further defined as an unincorporated community located within 150 miles of the Texas-Mexico border, or a city or town within said 150 mile region with a population of less than 10,000 according to the latest U.S. Census, that has a majority population composed of individuals and families of low and very Low-income, who lack safe, sanitary and sound housing, together with basic services such as potable water, adequate sewage systems, drainage, streets and utilities. The colonias present a critical housing need in the State of Texas. Housing in the colonias is primarily constructed with poor materials; professional builders are rarely used. Residents frequently start with tents or makeshift structures of wood, cardboard or other materials, and continue to improve their habitat as finances allow. The Office of Colonia Initiatives (OCI) was created in 1996 and charged with the responsibility of coordinating all Department and Legislative initiatives involving border issues and managing a portion of the Department's existing programs targeted for colonias. The OCI was formed by combining existing resources from various program areas (Single Family Bond Program, HOME Investment Partnerships Program (HOME), Community Development Block Grant Program (CDBG), Section 8 and Consolidated Agenda of the Southwest Area (CASA)). Since the creation of the OCI, more emphasis has been placed on the individual needs of colonia residents and a more comprehensive approach has been implemented towards improving living conditions in all colonias along the border region.
OCI has three Border Field Offices, originally part of the Community Development Division. The Border Field Offices were initially funded under a CASA (Consolidated Agenda for Southwest Area) grant through the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Due to their continuing presence and need, the Department has supported and maintained the offices'existence after the funding grant period ended. Their primary purpose is to provide technical assistance to colonia residents. The seventy-four (74) county area is served through offices located in Edinburg, Laredo, and El Paso. Assigned personnel from each office are responsible for marketing programs and services of the Department to colonia residents and for cooperating with local governments, state and federal agencies, non -profits and private organizations.
The OCI established five Colonia Self-Help Centers to fulfill the mandate of Senate Bill 1509 (74th Legislature, Regular Session, 1995), legislation intended to provide on-site technical assistance to improve the quality of life for colonia residents in ways that go beyond simply providing basic infrastructure. Five counties (El Paso, Webb, Starr, Hidalgo, and Cameron/Willacy) were selected by the Legislature and five colonias within each county were selected to receive concentrated technical assistance in the areas of housing rehabilitation, new construction, surveying and platting, construction skills training, tool library access for self-help, housing finance, credit and debt counseling, grant preparation, infrastructure constructions and access, contract-for-deed conversions, and capital access for mortgages and other improvements.
The OCI also developed and implemented a Contract For Deed Consumer Education Program (Senate Bill 336, 74th Legislature, Regular Session, 1995) for residents who purchase residential land under a contract for deed. By the late 1990s, the program has provided training for an estimated 2,140 colonia residents, city/county officials, justices of the peace, real estate agents, and developers, in counties along the Texas-Mexico border. The new annual determination currently affects 28 Texas counties. The Contract for Deed Conversions program assists colonial residents in converting their contracts for deed to conventional mortgages.
The Construction, Acquisition, Self-help Assistance (CASA) Loan Program promotes and enhances homeownership for very-Low-income Texans along the border by providing loan funds for constructing or acquiring single family residences.
The Texas Bootstrap Owner-Builder Loan Program (established by Senate Bill 1287, 76th Legislature, Regular Session, 1999) is designed to promote and enhance homeownership for very Low-income Texans by providing loan funds to purchase or refinance real property on which to build new residential housing, or to improve existing residential housing. The Department has $2.8 million to implement Phase I of this initiative. In order to distinguish this funding cycle from future cycles, this funding cycle is known as "FY 2000 Bootstrap - Phase I." Funding for the FY 2000 Bootstrap will be provided from the Department's Housing Trust Fund Department. Compliance with Housing Trust Fund rules and regulations is also required.
In November 1996, the Agency established a first ever bi-national meeting with housing counterparts from the Mexican states of Coahuila, Chihuahua, Nuevo Leon and Tamaulipas and formed the Texas/Mexico Border Housing Forum. The five border states signed a "Joint Declaration" signifying a continued international commitment to the development of affordable housing and the improvement of infrastructure along mutual borders.
In June 1996, the Department successfully obtained a waiver from HUD allowing the use of a new set of housing standards for Texas colonias. This new set of minimum standards, known as the "Colonia Housing Standards" or CHS, was adopted by HUD and FHA, to insure loans in the colonias.
In August 1998, the United States Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Service Office and the TDHCA, through OCI, began to discuss ways to improve nutrition and health services to colonia residents, resulting in the publication of "Partnership for Change: A Federal-State Pilot to Improve Nutrition and Health in the Texas Colonias."
Office of Strategic Planning/ Housing Resource Center (OSP/HRC)
The Center was established to provide educational materials and technical assistance to the public, community-based housing development organizations, non-profit housing developers, and other state and federal agencies. The assistance given helps housing providers determine local housing needs, access appropriate housing programs, and identify available funding sources needed to increase the stock of affordable housing. OSP/HRC assistance emphasizes increasing the state's capacity to develop and deliver housing for extremely low, very low, low, and moderate income individuals and families. The OSP/HRC is also responsible for the publications that TDHCA is required to submit to receive funding from both the state and federal government. These documents -- the State Low-income Housing Plan and Annual Report, State of Texas Consolidated Plan, and the TDHCA Strategic Plan are integral components of the strategic planning process that determines the direction of housing policy for the State of Texas. Recently, the OSP/HRC has been charged with the creation of several programs, including the Texas YouthWorks Program (YouthWorks), Statewide Architectural Barrier Removal Program (SABR), Home of Your Own Coalition (HOYO), and the Texas Statewide Homebuyer Education Program (TSHEP).
Housing Resource Center
The Housing Resource Center is administered by TDHCA. The Center provides technical and research assistance as well as U.S. census data to the public, non-profit housing developers, community-based housing development organizations, and state and federal agencies. Its mission is to increase the state's capacity to develop and deliver housing for very-low to moderate income families and persons.
Texas Interagency Council for the Homeless (TICH)
TDHCA provides administrative support for this council. TICH is composed representatives from 15 state agencies, advisory members, and appointees of the governor, lieutenant governor, and speaker of the house. Its responsibilities are to evaluate needs of, develop guidelines for, and assist in the provisions for state homeless persons; to establish a central information center for the homeless; and to facilitate communications between service providers and the authorities. It is also to work with TDHCA and the Texas Health and Human Services Commission to develop a strategic plan to address the needs of the homeless, and to help TDHCA assess housing for persons with special needs.
The main office of the agency is located in Austin. The Department has five technical assistance field offices in Lubbock, Lufkin, Laredo, El Paso and Edinburg.
Government and Communications Division
This division is responsible for disseminating Department information to the public, members of the Legislature and Texas Congressional delegation, state and federal agencies, the media, and organizations throughout the state involved in housing and community assistance and community development programs. The Division is also responsible for all external and internal communications and assists the Executive Director and other agency directors in the development and implementation of policy related to the agency's mandates. Additionally, it employs a representative in the Office of State and Federal Relations (OSFR) in Washington, DC.
Financial Services Division
This division is responsible for the overall fiscal management, accounting, and financial reporting for the Department. The Division's other functions include budgeting, payroll, purchasing, bond accounting and investment activities. It is also responsible for the coordination of information and planning relating to the state budget/appropriations process. The annual financial audit, conducted by an independent auditor, is facilitated through the Financial Services Division.
This section exists to provide information resources support and systems development to the program divisions of TDHCA. The division's primary goal is to assist the Department in achieving its goals and objectives as stated in the Department's Strategic Plan. Information Systems is composed of two sub-sections. Software Development maintains existing applications and designs new applications as requested by agency divisions and consults with division management in planning and designing information resources to assist in the operation of programs. Operations operates and maintains the Department's computer network and servers, provides end-user support for hardware and software, and installs and distributes new technology as appropriate.
Types of records include minutes, correspondence, resolutions, audit reports, budget requests, transcripts, supporting documentation, agenda, memoranda, organizational charts, news clippings, press releases, copies of labor contracts, articles, surveys, reports, briefs, announcements, newsletters, and a very small number of audio cassettes. The materials range in date from 1972 to 2001 and document the activities of the Texas Department of Community Affairs and the Advisory Council on Community Affairs, the Texas Housing Agency, and the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs.
Records from the Texas Department of Community Affairs, dating from 1972 to 1991, include executive director correspondence, annual reports, press releases and publications, budget requests and other financial reports, and performance and fund management reports. Also included are records from the 1982 sunset review of the department, including correspondence and reports, and transcripts of public hearings held on various topics across the state from 1974 to 1987, such as housing needs in Texas, circa 1974. Records from the Advisory Council include minutes, resolutions, and correspondence. Much of the correspondence passes among the Department of Community Affairs, its executive director Willie L. Scott, and federal and state government agencies. Subjects include federal funding for weatherization and energy crisis programs, assistance for low-income persons, fuel overcharges by oil companies, and block grants for community shelters for the homeless.
Texas Housing Agency records, 1980-1991, document Board of Directors' meetings, special committee meetings, public hearings, discussions, presentations, committee appointments and the introduction of resolutions. Discussions revolved around pending legislation, national and local economic conditions, committee reports, or banking issues and concerns with direct bearing on matters relating to business conducted by the Housing Agency. Presentations were done by bankers or various business concerns competing for contracts with the Housing Agency. Clippings and press releases cover topics such as the savings and loan crisis, the Resolution Trust Corporation, housing for the homeless, fighting the trafficking of illegal drugs in public housing, low-interest mortgages for homebuyers, and low-income rental housing and home buying, the allocation of funds and grant money, and the merger between the Texas Housing Agency and the Texas Department of Community Affairs.
Department of Housing and Community Affairs records range in date from 1991 to 2001. Meeting files are included for board and committee meetings held from October 1991 through December 2001. Also included are meeting files of the affiliated Texas State Affordable Housing Corporation Board, dating 1995-1998. Many of the earlier records are verbatim transcripts of board and committee meetings. At these meetings, discussions concern pending legislation, committee reports, low-income tax credits, purchase of multi-family properties from RTC (Resolution Trust Corporation), issuing bonds, a housing trust fund, the awarding of contracts, and other matters that document the work of the agency. Signature files consist of copies of anything that was signed by the director of the division while acting in an official capacity for the agency. These records concern, for example, shelter for the homeless, weatherization assistance programs, job descriptions in the division, and assistance with utility bills for the needy. Organization charts lay out the organizational structure of the Department of Housing and Community Affairs from the level of the Governor and Board to that of interns working in the smaller divisions.
Restrictions on Access
Restrictions on Use
See Photographs Archivist for possible use restrictions on unprocessed films.
(Identify the item and cite the series), Records, Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs. Archives and Information Services Division, Texas State Library and Archives Commission.
Accession numbers: 1988/004, 1991/187, 1992/028, 1993/006, 1993/022, 1993/130, 1993/156, 1994/020, 1994/063, 1994/122, 1994/126, 1995/027, 1995/164, 1995/165, 1996/021, 1997/117, 1997/139, 1998/075, 1999/121, 1999/122, 2000/093, 2000/132, 2001/085, 2002/091, 2012/123
These records were transferred to the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission by the Department of Community Affairs on June 15, 1979; September 9, 1987; September 21, 1992; October 20, 1992; October 19, 1993, July 5, 1994; and November 28, 1994; from the Legislative Reference Library on March 8, 1993; by the Texas Housing Agency on August 16, 1991; and by the Department of Housing and Community Affairs on April 30, 1993; April 28, 1993; January 28, 1994; July 26, 1994; August 23, 1995; August 24, 1995; post-August 1995; May 8, 1997; August 14, 1997; February 6, 1998; March 12, 1999; March 11, 1999; January 10, 2000; March 21, 2000; January 5, 2001; and January 8, 2002 and by the Texas Legislative Reference Library on March 27, 2002 (reaccessioned on February 3, 2012).
Lisa M. Hendricks, September 1992
Paul Beck, May 1993, October 1993, February 1994, July 1994, November 1994
Lisa M. Hendricks, November 1995, May 1997
Tony Black, August 1997, September 1997, February 1998, June 1998, March 1999
Nancy Enneking, April 1999, January 2000, March 2000, January 2001, July 2002
Detailed Description of the Records