About $32.5 million from Tarrant County’s American Rescue Plan Act funds is now available for affordable housing proposals.

In partnership with the Tarrant County Homeless Coalition, the county is seeking projects that tackle a growing need for permanent supportive housing and deeply affordable housing. 

Priority populations for these housing projects include supportive housing for people with a physical or mental disability and adults over 50. Permanent supportive housing needs should focus on ex-offenders and individuals who have an acute mental health diagnosis, according to the county request for proposal document. Deeply affordable housing units will benefit working families. 

But all types of affordable housing projects are welcomed. 

“This is a capital construction program,” said Kristen Camareno, assistant county administrator. “It’s definitely a multi-agency partnership and we hope that it will be successful. We hope that we’ll have a lot of interest from developers in this space.”

Funding was allocated in March, and the housing program was set in early August, Camareno said. Tarrant County has been slower in releasing its federal funds, with about $269 million remaining, as previously reported by the Fort Worth Report

The county hopes the $32.5 million will produce 254 affordable housing units. The need for more units comes as over 12,000 families remain on Tarrant County and Fort Worth’s housing waitlists. 

In the past year, rent prices in Fort Worth have increased by 15.7%

“We’re excited about this investment. It’s a historic investment from the county,” said Lauren King, executive director of the Tarrant County Homeless Coalition. “They are really using ARPA funds to leverage all the resources in the community and bringing public and private resources together to create housing for those most in need.”

Developers will also need to leverage other funding sources for their proposals, Camareno said. 

“We’re expecting that the developers are going to come with a capital funding plan for these projects,” she said. “Funding from the county is really intended to supplement the cost of creating the affordable units and making that a sustainable option for developers who might not otherwise consider it.”

The last day to submit 2022 proposals is Nov. 4 with the first round of funds awarded by Dec. 6. The county will continue to accept submissions until the funds are exhausted, Camareno said. 

For more information, read here.

Sandra Sadek is a Report for America corps member, covering growth for the Fort Worth Report. You can contact her at sandra.sadek@fortworthreport.org or on Twitter at @ssadek19

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Sandra SadekBusiness Reporter

Sandra Sadek is a Report for America corps member, covering growth for the Fort Worth Report. Originally from Houston, she graduated from Texas State University where she studied journalism and international...