Help for Soon-to-be-Homeless

The Knoxville-Knox County Ten-Year Plan to End Chronic Homelessness took a blow June 11 when the Metropolitan Planning Commission voted against rezoning the abandoned Flenniken School in South Knoxville as Permanent Supportive Housing. Federal efforts, though, involve much more positive news: Part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding already approved for Knoxville includes a formula grant that benefits families and individuals teetering on the brink of homelessness. Some details:

$518,000 support for existing Housing Relocation and Stabilization Services, managed by the Knoxville-Knox County Community Action Committee (CAC), to help prevent residents at risk of eviction from losing their housing, especially the elderly and disabled

$107,213 for CAC's Homeward Bound Program, which tries to help residents at risk of eviction due to job loss or catastrophic event and helps re-house recently homeless families and individuals

$108,000 to Legal Aid of East Tennessee for legal representation for low-income individuals and families at risk being evicted

$38,590 for administrative costs

$771,803 total approved stimulus funding for Knoxville's Homeless Prevention and Rapid Re-housing Program

100 percent awarded by U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development

As of July 30, these and other grant monies already awarded to Knoxville totalled $12,188,813 but had yet to be received. The city has applied for $26.9 million more in ARRA grants from several federal agencies.