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CDBG Disaster Recovery Program
Following Hurricanes Ike and Dolly in 2008, the State of Texas created the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Disaster Recovery Grant Program to provide financial assistance for communities to recover from the devastation of the storms. The City of Baytown is a grant recipient under this program for non-housing, public infrastructure projects. To date, the City has been awarded $33,360,211 for improvements to the sewer system, hardening of public buildings, upgrading the Central District Wastewater Treatment Plant, and repairs to the Baytown Area Water Authority.
During the process of administering the initial funding rounds, housing advocates initiated a lawsuit against the State of Texas for distributing the grant funds without consideration of equitable and fair housing for low to moderate income persons. An agreement was reached between the two parties, which among other things, required the State to conduct an Analysis of Impediments to Fair Housing (AI) and to develop a Fair Housing Plan. As a result, communities who wish to participate in the State's disaster program must identify fair housing impediments within the community and proposed steps for addressing those impediments.
Fair Housing Activity Statement - Texas (FHAST)
The State of Texas developed the Fair Housing Activity Statement – Texas (FHAST) Form for jurisdictions to complete. The FHAST Form lists the state's identified impediments and requires each jursidiction to provide steps that will affirmatively further fair housing. The State also requires the formation of a FHAST Work Group. The FHAST Work Group is the entity responsible for completing the FHAST Form and proposing steps to address fair housing impediments identified in a community. On September 8, 2011, the Mayor appointed the existing Community Development Advisory Committee (CDAC), along with two Planning & Development Services staff members as the FHAST Work Group.