Texas Insider Report: AUSTIN, Texas – The Texas Rent Relief Program, which has been plagued problems forcing tenants and landlords to wait weeks or months for relief, will be the focus of the House Committee on Urban Affairs at a public hearing on Wednesday, April 28, 2021, upon adjournment of the House floor session. The hearing will be in Room E1.026 of the Texas State Capitol, or online at https://house.texas.gov/video-audio/.
"Too many Texans have been waiting too long for help. Tenants have faced job losses due to COVID-19, and for them to experience weeks of delays in getting assistance is unconscionable," said State Representative Philip Cortez, Ph.D., (D-San Antonio), chairman of the Urban Affairs Committee. "Three weeks ago, only 250 out of more than 70,000 people who had applied had received money, even though the program had been opened for 45 days. When the federal government has provided $1.3 billion to help our fellow Texans, delays like these are inexcusable."
Committee members will again question officials with the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs (TDHCA) about the delays and the difficulties people have in completing the extensive and complicated online application. After the first hearing three weeks ago, committee members requested continuing updates on the program's difficulties.
"TDHCA and its private contractors have really let Texans down in the first two months of the program. Even the chairman of TDHCA's board of directors admits the performance has been 'woefully inadequate,'" said Chairman Cortez.
"Texans do not deserve the additional stress and anxiety these delays have caused. Texans deserve to have their applications decided in a couple of days, not a couple of months."