AUSTIN, Texas — Travis County commissioners voted unanimously on Tuesday to support the more than 85 families who live at the Rosemont at Oak Valley, directing staff to come up with a plan to try to meet the renters' demands.
These are the same residents who received vacate letters on July 2 from the South Austin affordable housing complex management team, asking them to leave their apartments by July 31 due to ongoing repairs of damages caused by February's winter storms.
Around two dozen residents signed up to speak by telephone, detailing issues that ranged from backed-up toilets to leaking air conditioning units they said took days to fix.
Commissioners also heard from Patrick Howard, vice president of the Strategic Housing Finance Corporation, the group that manages affordable housing properties for Travis County, like Rosemont. It's responsible for hiring Capstone Management, the property management team at Rosemont.
Kecia Prince spoke at the commissioner's court meeting. She said while she is relieved, there is still a long way to go.
"Now that we're able to stay now, next is getting to the negotiation table and figuring out where are we going to place people, you know – how much money we'll give people to help them if they want to leave? You know, and making sure that people that want to be rehoused be able to come back to their unit when it is, when they're finished with the repairs," Prince said.
Prince said residents are expected to meet with Capstone Management on Wednesday evening.
Since February's winter storm, crews have been making repairs after the apartments sustained water and mold damage. In the vacate letters, Rosemont cited necessary repairs from the winter storm as the reason for the evictions. The letter included a list of nonprofit groups and affordable housing options.
But some residents told KVUE earlier this month they were shocked by the eviction letters and have been unable to receive the help they need.
According to the agenda for Tuesday's commissioners court meeting, commissioners were expected to receive a briefing regarding mitigation at Rosemont and at any other housing in response to February's winter storm that "may impact the response to and recovery from COVID-19" and take appropriate action, including but not limited to directing staff to take appropriate steps to assist in finding housing, allocate necessary funding and any other necessary steps.
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