Killeen city leaders vote to accept grant, providing up to 6 months of rent to those in need

Posted at 5:54 AM, Oct 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-28 06:54:37-04

KILLEEN, TX — Soon, local Killeen residents and businesses will be able to receive thousands of dollars to help out with bills impacted by the pandemic.

Tuesday, Killeen city leaders voted to accept a HUD Grant worth more than $726,000. The money is the second round of funding from the CARES Act.

“We are going to divide it up. 70 percent is going to help people on the residential side. About 30 percent is going to go to the businesses,” said Killeen Mayor Jose Segarra.

Housing assistance for desperate local families will provide up to $4,000 - or 6 months of paid rent, mortgage, utilities.

The grant will also provide up to $8,000, or up to 6 months of utilities, rent and other assistance, for local businesses. Personal trainer Heather Cremo said local small businesses need help.

“It was really hard,” said Personal Trainer Heather Cremo. “Especially, for business owners that it was their first year open. They were able to survive them some were not. Gyms especially and personal trainers.”

Cremo said independent contractors like herself had to find other ways to make ends meet during the pandemic.

Many are still working to get back up and running. City officials said they didn’t offer assistance for local businesses the first time around. The 30 percent should be enough to help them get back on their feet.

Mayor Segarra said they’re still finalizing how to apply.

“At the first time, I remember, they were like 300 applications,” said Segarra. “We’re always going to have more applications than money. That’s why there’s a process.”

Applications should be available within the next 30 days, so Central Texans in Bell County can move a step closer to rebounding.

Going to the leaders also set aside around $100,000 to hire temporary staff and create programs so people can access the applications.