Texas

Travis County Approves $35 Million for Mobile Loaves & Fishes Housing and Infrastructure.

TRAVIS COUNTY, Texas (KXAN) — Travis County Commissioners on Tuesday approved a $35 million contract with Mobile Loaves & Fishes under the American Plan of Rescue Act (ARPA). The money will help build homes, infrastructure and improve services.

This is the first assignment of $110 million the county has received and allocated from the Biden administration’s ARPA, which was an economic stimulus bill signed into law during the COVID-19 pandemic. The county previously said it would use the funds to build at least 2,000 housing units for the homeless.

After Travis County signed off on the first $35 million dotted line on Tuesday, Mobile Loaves & Fishes says they will be able to build 640 units in their Community First! Location of Burleson village. The money will go to roads, utilities, house foundations, security, laundry, toilets and other community resources.

“We currently have about 400 people living with us and the number will grow, and by the time we are all done, we will have about 1900-2000 people,” said Alan Graham, founder of Mobile Loaves & Fishes.

Graham said they plan to start work on this project in early summer. Construction will take approximately two years, he said, and Mobile Loaves & Fishes will be able to relocate people to the community no later than 2025.

“Through Mobile Loaves & Fishes, residents receive physical and mental assistance, addiction services, decent job opportunities, and, most importantly, the right to vote,” said Travis County Judge Andy Brown.

The county said it is still working on contracts for the remaining $75 million the county still has in ARPA funding.

“There are additional units that the Foundation Communities… we will tell you about it once we get final approval, they have something like an apartment building in front of this. The Other Foundation, there are additional units,” Brown said.

He noted that about half of the money goes to a non-commercial joint project. According to Brown, the contract for this has not yet been put forward.

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