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					TARRANT COUNTY 2005-2009 CONSOLIDATED PLAN




                                VIII. FAIR HOUSING


An Analysis of Impediments (AI) to Fair Housing Choice was conducted by the staff of
the Tarrant County Community Development Division (CDD) and was updated in 2004
during the consolidated planning process. As the designated lead agency the CDD
administers the following HUD programs: Community Development Block Grant
(CDBG), HOME Investment Partnership (HOME), Emergency Shelter Grant (ESG), and
McKinney Act programs for the homeless, including Supportive Housing Program (SHP)
and Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA).

As a HUD entitlement jurisdiction, Tarrant County is charged with affirmatively furthering
fair housing within the entitlement jurisdiction area. This area includes 43 cities in the
urban county jurisdiction and excludes the cities of Fort Worth, Arlington, and Grand
Prairie.

The AI reviews information on fair housing complaints and identifies impediments based
on an evaluation of public sector policies and actions including zoning policies, lot-size,
public housing site selection, and building requirements. The AI also looks at policies
that exist in the private sector that might impact fair housing including private sector
lending practices, and discriminatory real-estate practices such as steering or
blockbusting.

The AI also contains information on current fair housing programs and activities in the
jurisdiction. Tarrant County had one agency, United Cerebral Palsy, that received Fair
Housing Initiatives Program (FHIP) funding through 2003. The Fort Worth Human
Relations Commission receives Fair Housing Assistance Program (FHAP) funding and
takes fair housing calls in the city of Fort Worth.

Unlike the Fort Worth Human Relations Commission, CDD does not have enforcement
power to act on the calls they receive and instead refers calls on to the appropriate
enforcement agency. The Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity division of the local HUD
office is also a referral source for discrimination complaints and general fair housing
information.

As an urban county and not a municipality jurisdiction, Tarrant County faces a different
challenge to affirmatively further fair housing than do cities. Under Texas law,
incorporated cities, not counties, are invested with extensive ordinance-making powers.
The county is thereby not in a position to exercise ordinance reform with respect to fair
housing. The county’s role is to lead by example by being diligent in complying with all
aspects of the Fair Housing Act in the housing programs it runs or monitors. The county
also convenes forums for education, provides materials and information for outreach
and education, and encourages municipalities to enact rules and procedures that
enhance fair housing choices.



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TARRANT COUNTY 2005-2009 CONSOLIDATED PLAN



JURSIDICTION’S CURRENT FAIR HOUSING LEGAL STATUS

There are no ongoing complaints where the Secretary has issued a charge of or made a
finding of discrimination in the Urban County Jurisdiction of Tarrant County, nor have
there been any fair housing suits filed by the Department of Justice or private plaintiffs.

IDENTIFICATION OF IMPEDIMENTS TO FAIR HOUSING CHOICE

According to the Fair Housing Planning Guide of the HUD Office of Fair Housing and
Equal Opportunity, impediments to fair housing choice are:

      1. Any actions, omissions, or decisions taken because of race, color, religion,
      sex, disability, familial status, or national origin which restrict housing choices or
      the availability of housing choice.

      2. Any actions, omissions or decisions which have the effect of restricting
      housing choices or the availability of housing choices on the basis of race, color,
      religion, sex, disability, familial status, or national origin.

      3. Actions or omissions to the jurisdiction’s public or private housing sector that
      constitute violations or potential violations of the Fair Housing Act or that are
      counterproductive to fair housing choice.

An examination of The impediments to fair housing choice are categorized as follows:

   1) Affordable Housing – The limited availability of low-income housing and
      apartments as well as the quality, and geographic diversity of apartments
      accepting Housing Choice Vouchers within the urban county;

   2) Transportation – The inadequacy and absence of public transportation within
      the urban county to allow for greater housing choice;

   3) Financial Standing – The over-representation of minorities denied home
      mortgage loans and possessing poor credit history and limited history of banking
      relationships necessary to further housing choices; and

   4) Access to Information – The limited public knowledge among builders,
      municipal leaders, landlords, and the general public of the law, tenant rights, and
      resources regarding fair housing choice; and lack of information on opportunities
      to further housing opportunities, and information provided in Spanish in response
      to Tarrant County’s growing Hispanic population.

IMPEDIMENT 1: Affordable Housing

Decent affordable housing is necessary to maintain neighborhoods and ensure quality
of life for low-income families. As mentioned in the Housing Needs section of the



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Consolidate Plan, a significant proportion of housing stock (renter and owner occupied)
is not affordable to low income households. A disproportionate number of minority and
elderly households are cost burned, paying over 30 percent of household income to
maintain housing. Because there is diversity of income levels in all communities, all will
need some proportion of decent, affordable housing for their low-income residents.

Affordability continues to be a key issue in the county’s suburbs. A large percentage of
the growth in Tarrant County over the past twenty years has occurred in these suburban
cities where housing stock is newer and less affordable to families of low and moderate
income. Housing stock in Tarrant County considered to be recently constructed (less
than 35 years old) is generally not affordable to low-income households. The lack of
affordable housing in any jurisdiction has a disproportionately negative affect on
minority households and households with elderly or disabled persons.

The Tarrant County Housing office currently places Housing Choice Voucher (HCV)
clients in available units in Tarrant County and outside the cities of Fort Worth,
Arlington, and Grand Prairie. Tarrant County housing currently has 2,409 active tenants
and 1,389 persons on the waiting list.

The goal of the housing assistance department is to place clients in a wide variety of
areas and to avoid clustering clients in low-income areas. The ideal scenario is to have
pockets of housing available throughout the county where HCV clients would be able to
use their vouchers. The limited number of multi-family housing in many of the urban
cities prevents the comprehensive distribution among urban county cities. However,
there has been improved distribution of clients since the 2002 AI update. Approximately
one-third of the HCV Clients reside in the mid-cities area in the northeast quadrant of
the county, an area with larger availability of apartments, especially in the Euless area.
This location has good access to one of the largest employers in the area, the
Dallas/Fort Worth Airport and American Airlines.

Affordable housing is lacking in the areas that have experienced the most growth over
the last fifteen years. The Alliance corridor, where a large numbers of jobs have been
created recently, is greatly lacking in affordable housing forcing long commutes and no
adequate public transportation. The far northeast portion of the county, another area of
tremendous growth has the least inventory of affordable housing in the county.

IMPEDIMENT 2: Transportation

The City of Fort Worth operates a sophisticated mass transit bus system throughout the
city proper, with service to several nearby urban centers. Fares vary according to
distance and service, but are generally affordable. Unfortunately, the services offered by
Fort Worth’s public transportation infrastructure do not reach far enough into the
outlying areas in Tarrant County where a great number of jobs have been created in
recent years. Key areas of job growth are occurring in far north Tarrant County
unreachable to most of the urban county residents who do not own their own vehicles.
There is no regular linking shuttle between the central districts of Arlington and Fort



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Worth. As pointed out earlier, these fast-growing job centers are also the areas of the
county where housing is least affordable.

The Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex continues to be an area where individuals are largely
dependent on cars. The in-roads made to increase the availability of public
transportation have been significant over the past twenty years, but still cover a woefully
inadequate portion of the area, particularly outside the city centers of Fort Worth and
Dallas. The city of Arlington, which lies directly between Fort Worth and Dallas, is the
largest city in the nation with no mass transit system.

The City of Fort Worth in a joint venture with the City of Dallas has begun commuter rail
service between the two cities, the Trinity Railway Express. Currently, stops are
available in Richland Hills, Hurst, Centreport, South Irving and three locations in Dallas.
The commuter system has added opportunities for families to ride to and from work and
has been well received. This system goes through northeast Tarrant County, however
the northern Alliance Center has not been connected nor has Arlington or many of the
mid-cities. The City of Fort Worth is seeking to address these issues and work with its
neighboring cities through cooperative agreements and cooperation facilitated by the
North Central Texas Council of Governments. Nevertheless, public transportation
remains a major concern for poorer residents of the urban county. Accessibility to jobs
that pay at least a living wage is an important factor in determining whether
neighborhoods can prosper.

IMPEDIMENT 3: Financial Standing

As Home Mortgage Disclosure Act information continues to reveal, a disproportionate
number of minorities are denied applications for home loans and specifically are denied
loans based on poor credit history. The housing market is very strong in Tarrant County,
and minority homeownership has markedly increased, however, there is a clear
disproportion of mortgage application denials, denials often based on the weak financial
standing by these families.

As the number of recent loan applications indicates, the desire of low-income and
minority families to own their own home in Tarrant County is strong. However, the gap
in these families achieving their dream of homeownership cannot be reduced improving
their financial preparation, a greater stock of affordable starter homes, and assistance in
creating credit history and formal relationships with banking institutions.

In 1996, the Analysis of Impediments to fair housing showed that blacks and Hispanics
had a significantly higher percentage of loans denied than did whites at the same
income level. In 2001, the data showed discrepancies, but the gap was closing
between whites and other races. An examination of HMDA data for 2003 shows
continued gaps in origination and denial rates between races, however, the discrepancy
is slowly diminishing.




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From 2001 to 2003, applications for home loans in the Fort Worth-Arlington MSA
increased by 5.4%. In 2001, a total of 16,980 families applied for federally backed home
loans In 2003, that number declined to 15,028, but the number of conventional
applications made up the difference with 49,958 applications up from 44,623. Highly
competitive interest rates shifted some groups to the conventional loan market.

There are some very positive signs in examining financial information in regards to fair
housing choice. The HMDA data reveals an increased confidence by minority groups to
apply for home mortgages. Between 2001 and 2003, African American applications
increased by 23.7%. Hispanics applications for conventional home purchase loans
increased by 28.57%.


Home Mortgage Loans Application Originated and Denied by Race of applicant
           Applications   Applications  Loans      Loans                                            Denial             Denial
            Received       Received    Originated Originated Origination Origination                 Rate               Rate
 Race         2003           2001        2003       2001     Rate 2003 Rate 2001                    2003               2001
                             FHA, FSA/RHS AND VA HOME PURCHASE LOANS
American
                    49            50          34         42      82.93%          95.45%             17.07%               2.27%
Indian
Asian              174           253         127        194      87.59%          91.07%              9.66%               7.98%
Black            1,678         1,772       1,136      1,326      79.78%          87.29%             18.96%               9.74%
Hispanic         2,231         2,352       1,619      1,907      84.94%          91.28%             12.64%               7.22%
White            7,544         9,107       5,950      7,581      90.62%          93.54%              8.39%               5.44%
                              CONVENTIONAL HOME PURCHASE LOANS
American
                   185           197         102         87      69.39%               58%          27.89%              35.33%
Indian
Asian            2,282         1,628       1,462      1117       80.91%          83.11%             15.88%             13.16%
Black            3,231         2,196       1,563        932      62.60%          50.88%             29.64%             41.95%
Hispanic         5,039         3,919       2,911      2,116      69.19%          64.12%             24.44%             31.66%
White           29,597        27,369      20,497     18,021      81.79%          77.03%             15.22%             20.33%
                                                                       SOURCE: FFIEC Home Mortgage Disclosure Act Data www.ffiec.gov




The denial and originations rates detailed in the table are derived from the total
applications received, less those withdrawn. The denial rates on conventional loans for
blacks and Hispanics declined more than ten percent in each race group in two years.
Access to capital has increased for minority homeowners. However, there is still a
disparity, as white applicants experienced a 15.22 percent denial rate, compared to
29.64 percent for blacks, a 14.42 percent difference. In 2001, the gap was 21.62
percent, showing that progress is being made in closing the financial gap.

When looking at denial rates between race classifications among those in similar
income brackets, there is an 11.08% gap between whites and blacks, down from 15.3
percent in 2001. The denial rate for blacks in 2001 was nearly 70 percent, in 2003; it
had declined to 54.33 percent, the same rate as whites experienced in 2001.




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Disposition of Conventional Home Purchase Applications by Race and Income comparing 2001
to 2003.
             Applications  Applications   Loans     Loans                                                Denial           Denial
              Received      Received    Originated Originated Origination         Origination             Rate             Rate
    Race        2003          2001         2003      2001     Rate 2003           Rate 2001              2003             2001
                                CONVENTIONAL HOME PURCHASE LOANS
Incomes less than 50% of MSA Median Income
Black                 275           430         82         96    39.42%                 25.88%          54.33%            69.54%
Hispanic            1,304        1,252         718        637    63.77%                 58.82%          30.99%            38.60%
White               2,353        3,210       1,071      1,195    54.17%                 44.46%          43.25%            54.24%
Incomes between 50 – 79% of MSA Median Income
Black                 862           596        382        216    56.76%                 44.26%          34.18%            47.95%
Hispanic            1,587        1,236         907        646    67.49%                 62.48%          24.11%            32.88%
White              5,k191        5,593       3,270      2,988    74.42%                 64.42%          21.98%            32.66%
                                                                         SOURCE: FFIEC Home Mortgage Disclosure Act Data www.ffiec.gov




An examination in to the causes of being denied home loans is necessary to try and
further improve the success rate of minorities in owning their own home. Though
banking in banking institutions are not required to report reasons for loan denials, most
do report the reasons for denial in their disclosure reports.

Reasons for Denial for Conventional Loans by Race, Income 2003
                Debt/Income       Employment                                                               Insufficient
                   Ratio             History        Credit History            Collateral                      Cash
     Race        2003 / 2001       2003 / 2001       2003 / 2001             2003 / 2001                   2003 / 2001
  Black         14%         14%    2%       2%       33%       32%           6%              3%             5%           12%
  Hispanic      17%         14%    3%       2%       34%       43%           9%              7%             6%            8%
  White         15%         17%    4%       2%       33%       37%           7%              5%             4%            5%
                                                                     SOURCE: FFIEC Home Mortgage Disclosure Act Data www.ffiec.gov




As indicated by the HMDA data, rates of denial are very similar across all applications
and all reasons. The most significant reason for denial is credit history, not just of blacks
and Hispanics, but among all racial groups.

Actions to counter this impediment must focus on assisting low and moderate income
families to create a positive financial history. Strategies should include pre-purchase
credit counseling, encouragement to establish relationships with banking institutions,
and developing household budgets that include personal savings.

Strategies to eliminate the impediment of weak financial standing must include
encouraging banking institutions themselves to become part of the community in areas
of high concentrations of low-income and minority neighborhoods. Often in these
communities finances are conducted by payroll check-cashing storefronts and other
informal utility payment services that, though conveniently located in these
communities, provide no lending or savings services and they charge extraordinary user
fees and effective interest rates. Therefore, although families may indeed have of
steady employment and consistent payment records, they have no credit history and no
savings. Limited credit reports and lack of collateral affect not just the potential home
buyer, but may also limit the opportunities for improved rental housing when receiving a
low credit score upon applying for a lease.


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The Tarrant County Housing Partnership and the Housing Services of Fort Worth both
have incorporated pre-purchase counseling educational programs as part of their first
time home buyer programs. The CDD also provides contact information to participating
mortgage companies. Through the Neighborhood Housing Services of Fort Worth,
assistance is also offered in how to acquire home improvement loans to revitalize
communities.


IMPEDIMENT 4: Access to Information

The need to educate the public about fair housing and tenant rights and regulations is
ongoing. CDD currently holds a yearly forum open to the public where fair housing
issues are presented and discussed, distributes a pamphlet on Fair Housing and Tenant
Rights, provides a number as a clearinghouse for fair housing information and
complaints, and is available for presentations on fair housing information anywhere in
the urban county jurisdiction.

Beyond these efforts, more remains to be done. Attendance of relevant target groups at
community meeting remains low, and calls to this office indicate that there is still a great
deal of confusion and misinformation about fair housing laws. Advocates for low-income
individuals who are seeking housing, particularly in apartments, indicate that while
discriminatory practices are rare, there is little or no effort to inform potential tenants of
their rights, and no signs or posters related to fair housing in most apartment complex
offices.

Information and education are considered impediments because there is always more
that can be done to improve knowledge among those touched by fair housing issues.
The better educated landlords, real-estate agents, mortgage lenders, city leaders,
homebuyers and tenants are, the greater the chances that discrimination associated
with fair housing can be avoided.

With the increasing Hispanic population in the county, providing information and
education in Spanish is very important. In 2004, the CDD updated and translated its
brochures on Fair Housing Choice and First Time Home Buyers Program into Spanish.
During the 31st year CDBG application process, income surveys in Blue Mound and
Haslet were translated into Spanish for the first time in order that these families could
participate to assure program dollars would improve their streets and water utilities.

FAIR HOUSING INQUIRIES

Tarrant County’s records on fair housing complaints is unexceptional. The majority of
the complaints received at the CDD offices are regarding tenant’s rights or involve
misinterpretation or failure to fully read the lease agreement. To date, approximately
nine complaints have been passed on to any fair housing investigative body. However,
the complaints received at the Community Development offices do not represent the
entirety of fair housing complaints in the jurisdiction. The Texas Commission of Human



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Rights, which handles fair housing issues on a statewide basis, and the local HUD
offices also take complaints in the jurisdiction.

If a complaint received by this office does rise to the level of need for investigation or if
the tenant wishes to file a grievance, referrals are made to the Texas Commission or
HUD. The Fort Worth Human Relations Commission handles all fair housing
complaints and education/outreach in Fort Worth proper.

In 1996, the Tarrant County Community Development Division entered into an interlocal
agreement with the Fort Worth Human Relations Commission to receive and investigate
citizen inquiries concerning housing issues and to conduct fair housing training and
outreach throughout Tarrant County. In December of 2000, the interlocal agreement
was terminated, and the Community Development Division began to provide these
services directly.

Through fourth quarter 2004, 1,267 calls have been logged by the CDD for the FHIP
program. Based on the number and type of calls received the majority of fair housing
inquiries in this time period involved problems with landlords entering homes without
permission, infestation, repairs and payment issues. CDD sends a Fair Housing and
Tenant Rights information pamphlet to all callers and provides information on resources
in the community. The majority of the calls received fall under the heading of tenant-
landlord disputes and are not fair housing related. If fair housing issues prove to be an
underlying cause in these types of disputes, the caller is referred to a fair housing
enforcement office.

There is a large need for renters in Tarrant County to be educated about their rights and
their responsibilities. Callers frequently have not read the lease they have signed and
are not aware what of their rights or their obligations. The area with the most complaints
appears to be the Hurst, Euless, and Bedford area. This area has experienced a surge
in population and there are a great number of large apartment complexes.

There are a number of callers that fall under HUD’s definition of “cost-burdened.” This
indicates a greater need for homebuyer assistance and/or homebuyer education
programs, especially for minority populations. According to the fair housing calls
received by Tarrant County Community Development renter/lease education is needed,
especially in the high growth areas to prevent cost burden and subsequent evictions.

TARRANT COUNTY PUBLIC/PRIVATE FAIR HOUSING

In addition to the efforts by Tarrant County Community Development, Tarrant County
currently has several resources for fair housing information and enforcement. The
Southwest Regional office of HUD’s Fair Housing Enforcement Center is in Fort Worth.
This office distributes information, holds educational seminars, answers questions and
investigates complaints in regards to fair housing. The Fort Worth Human Relations
Commission (HRC) receives FHAP money from HUD and investigates complaints
regarding fair housing. HRC is also a source of information for all fair housing issues.



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United Cerebral Palsy of Tarrant County is a FHIP agency and provides education and
information in the County. In addition, The Texas Commission on Human Rights takes
calls on any fair housing inquiry in the state of Texas. The Texas Commission
investigates claims that rise to the level of fair housing discrimination.

The efforts of the “T” to expand and diversify public transportation in Fort Worth and
some surrounding communities is a positive step, but there remains an enormous need
for public transportation in a majority of the urban county jurisdictions. It continues to be
the case that persons without their own source of transportation outside the city limits of
Fort Worth have a very difficult time getting around. Lack of transportation options limits
the place where people can live and limits their opportunity to find housing they can
afford.




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ACTIONS TO ADDRESS IMPEDIMENTS

The action plan for addressing impediments include:

                                                                                                         Actual
                           Specific task or                        Performance           Expected
      #                                                                                                  Units to
                       implementation strategy                       Measure               Units
                                                                                                          date
  IMPEDIMENT 1: Affordable Housing
  1      Providing housing assistance to special populations
         through shelters, transitional housing and housing
         rehabilitation.
  2      CDD will provide urban planning and administrative
         services for the County.
  IMPEDIMENT 2: Transportation
  3      CDD will actively participate in the Tarrant Regional    Meetings             12    meetings    2005: 3
         Transportation Coalition to promote cooperative          attending, hold      per year
         decisions on transportation including the approval of    membership and
         the regional Mobility Plan, air quality and              office within the
         transportation projects.                                 coalition.
  IMPEDIMENT 3: Financial Standing
  4      Providing information regarding local resources          Number of calls                        2005: 4
         available to prepare for homeownership and monitor       and inquiries.
         HMDA data for the Fort Worth-Arlington area for
         improvement in home mortgage loan originations for
         minorities.
         .
  IMPEDIMENT 4: Access to Information
  5      Providing a telephone number for fair housing            Maintain a           180 calls per     2005:
         complaints, processing those complaints and              record of calls      year.
         providing information, advocacy, or, if the complaint    received and
         rises to the level of investigation, making an           their disposition.
         appropriate referral.
  6      Providing outreach and education to first-time           Translate all Fair   # of Fair
         homebuyers, especially in predominately minority         Housing              Housing
         areas, with information provided in English and          materials in to      publications
         Spanish.                                                 Spanish.
  7      Providing a clearinghouse for fair housing               Present Fair         1 per year
         information and advocating for fair housing in all the   Housing
         cities in the jurisdiction through the Tarrant County    information at
         Mayors, Council.                                         Mayors’ Council
                                                                  meeting.
  8       Conduct Fair Housing Public Information Forums in       Number of            2 per year, one   2005: 2
          Tarrant County.                                         meetings             in English, one
                                                                  conducted.           in English and
                                                                  Number of            Spanish
                                                                  persons
                                                                  attended
  9       Produce all informational brochures for availability    Number of            100 visits per
          on the county website.                                  hits/downloads.      year




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CDD will provide education and outreach on fair housing and tenants rights, upon
request, across the County. 5) Providing a number for fair housing complaints,
processing those complaints and providing information, advocacy, or, if the complaint
rises to the level of investigation, making an appropriate referral. Referrals will be made
to the Human Relations Commission of Fort Worth, or the Texas Commission on
Human Rights or local HUD offices for complaints in Tarrant County but outside the city
of Fort Worth.

ACTIONS TO ADDRESS IMPEDIMENTS

1) CDD will provide housing assistance to special populations through shelters,
transitional housing and housing rehabilitation.

CDD supports the efforts of non-profit community organizations that provide social
services and low-income housing to low-income and underserved populations. In
addition to financial assistance, CDD provides technical expertise, planning, support
and encouragement to individuals and organizations interested in serving their
communities. Currently, CDD manages grants for a variety of non-profit organizations
that make transitional housing available to persons who are currently, or are at risk for
becoming, homeless. In addition to housing these programs provide a number of social
services to populations including person living with HIV/AIDS and fleeing domestic
violence.

CDD also runs its own Supportive Housing Program that provides transitional housing in
conjunction with intense case management to persons who are homeless, facing
eviction or fleeing domestic violence. In addition, CDD manages grants from the
Department of Health and Human Services that provide drug and alcohol treatment for
homeless persons and for low income women and their children. CDD will continue to
work with agencies, both public and private, who work in support of more livable
neighborhoods and a higher quality of life for its residents.

CDD provides housing rehabilitation to privately owned homes for the elderly,
handicapped, or low-income families with dependent children. All of the homes have
had major system failures in the roof, plumbing, floor, etc. and require costly
professional repairs. CDD arranges inspection and rehabilitates these homes through
highly qualified contractors, and ensures that the homes are again safe, comfortable
and durable enough to meet the applicable building codes. CDD also provides
emergency assistance to qualified homeowners. These home repair programs maintain
the housing stock in the County and prevent families from leaving their home or
neighborhood because of affordability.

2) CDD will provide urban planning and administrative services for the County.

The Tarrant County Community Development Division, CDD, serves as the
administrative agency for the Tarrant County Mayors’ Council which currently has 29
member cities. The Mayors’ Council serves a number of important roles. It is the



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advisory body for the urban county’s Community Development Block Grant Program,
and 25 of the 37 member cities form a consortium to carry out public works and service
projects (serving low and moderate income persons) in those cities. It also supports the
Texas Municipal League, National League of Cities and other municipal and political
organizations. The Mayors’ Council is perhaps the most effective inter-city organization
for cooperation and information available to the cities of Tarrant County, and as such, is
an important part of addressing fair housing issues.

CDD has presented information on fair housing to the Mayors Council in the form of
presentations and pamphlets to each city. CDD also presented a public forum dealing
with fair housing and the Analysis of Impediments to each of the precincts and invited all
the cities in that area. CDD will continue to outreach to each of the cities yearly through
the Mayors’ Council, through dispersal of information, and through public forums in their
precinct. CDD will also inform cities of perceived impediments to fair housing in their
jurisdictions and the nature of any complaints from those jurisdictions that are passed
on to an investigative body. The fact that CDD both prepares the AI and is the
administrative agency for the Mayors’ Council streamlines any programs that the body
might take.

3) CDD will actively participate in the Tarrant Regional Transportation Coalition to
promote cooperative decisions on transportation including the approval of the regional
Mobility Plan, air quality, and transportation projects.

CDD senior staff maintain a board position on the Tarrant Regional Transportation
Coalition that was created in 2004. Monthly meetings bring together leaders from cities
across the Metroplex, policy makers, transportation officials, and others concerned
about regional transportation planning that meets the demands of one of the fastest
growing metropolitan areas in the nation.

4) Providing information regarding local resources available to prepare for
homeownership and monitor HMDA data for the Fort Worth-Arlington area for
improvement in home mortgage loan originations for minorities.

The CDD will provide information to interested first-time homebuyers on local resources
and agencies that offer instruction on the facts of homeownership, financial preparation,
pre-purchasing counseling and other issues related to home buying. Dissemination of
this information will occur through phone inquiries, public meetings and hearings, and
other related fairs and informational meetings where CDD staff is in attendance.

For qualified low-income families, CDD pays a portion of the down payment and closing
costs associated with buying a home. Families who are thus able to meet their
mortgage obligations, but may have trouble with the up-front costs of home purchase,
may now be able to buy their own home. One of the key components of the first-time
homebuyers program is homeowner education and on-going foreclosure prevention.
Through this education and outreach CDD will address impediments to fair housing by
preparing families for homeownership and preventing them from being cost-burdened.



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The CDD has examined HMDA data as part of the AI process. This data will be
reviewed on an annual basis and tracked for improvement in the origination rates for
minorities applying for home mortgage, home improvement, and refinancing loans.

5) Providing a telephone number for fair housing complaints, processing those
complaints and providing information, advocacy, or, if the complaint rises to the level of
investigation, making an appropriate referral.

CDD previously contracted with the City of Fort Worth Human Relations Department to
provide fair housing education and outreach in the urban county area. CDD brought
this in-house to provide a closer tie between planning and identification of trends. CDD
provides outreach at housing fairs and gives presentations to each of the four precincts
in the service area.

6) CDD will provide outreach and education to first-time homebuyers, especially in
predominately minority areas. CDD will provide information on this program in English
and Spanish.

Providing solid, affordable housing and facilities for low and moderate-income families is
a challenge for many communities across the nation. For Tarrant County, with its
changing economic conditions and steady population growth, addressing this challenge
has become especially difficult. To meet the County’s housing and development needs,
the Commissioners Court established, in 1977, the Planning Department, which evolved
into the Community Development Division of the Administrator’s Office. Today CDD
operates or supports many public service programs to improve public facilities for the
poor, handicapped and elderly. CDD also assists first-time homebuyers, repairs existing
homes, and carries out a number of other projects to serve community needs. To these
ends, CDD administers federal funds provided by the (HUD) through its Community
Block Grant and housing programs. CDD activities channel these funds to local cities
and organizations to enhance the vitality and quality of life for the County’s numerous
and diverse neighborhoods and cities.

CDD has set up a booth at the First-Time Homebuyers Fair in March every year since
2001. CDD staff was available to discuss all available programs and fair housing with
attendees. During the 2005 Fair 223 First-Time Homebuyers brochures, 41
Rehabilitation brochures, and 23 Fair Housing pamphlets were distributed.

7) Providing a clearinghouse for fair housing information and advocating for fair housing
in all the cities in the jurisdiction through the Tarrant County Mayors’ Council.

CDD presents information and pamphlets to the Tarrant County Mayors’ Council
meeting annually. The Mayors’ Council represents the 29 member cities of the urban
county consortium.




FAIR HOUSING                                                              Section VIII Page 13
TARRANT COUNTY 2005-2009 CONSOLIDATED PLAN



The CDD Fair housing information will also be provided to the non-profit housing
providers on issues such as tenant rights, lease education and homeowner
education/foreclosure prevention. CDD will provide fair housing information pamphlets
in both English and Spanish.

8) Conduct Fair Housing Public Information Forums in Tarrant County.

During public forums to discuss the Continuum of Care, the CDBG application process,
and the HOME program, the CDD dedicates a portion of the presentation to present
Fair Housing Choice Information. Two such presentations were given in 2005 On
January 13 and on February 7. 28 pamphlets on Fair Housing were taken by attendees.
Upon request, the CDD staff will conduct informational or public forums in any part of
Tarrant County.


9) Produce all informational brochures for availability on the county website.

 The CDD has produced its brochures on First-Time Homebuyer Program, Fair
Housing, and Home Rehabilitation program in downloadadable pdf format and are
available on the Tarrant County website at www.TarrantCounty.com. The CDD will
begin tracking the number of downloads of this material as well as visits to the Fair
Housing information web page in 2005.




FAIR HOUSING                                                              Section VIII Page 14

				
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