Senator Eddie Lucio, Jr.

MEDIA ADVISORY FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2002
CONTACT: Doris Sanchez
Phone: 512-463-0127

Families to occupy 20 new homes built under Bootstrap Program
Who:    State Sen. Eddie Lucio, Jr. (D-Brownsville) and the Community Development Corporation of Brownsville (CDCB)
What:   Bootstrap Homeownership Celebration Press Conference
When:  Friday, Sept. 27, 2002, at 10 a.m.
Where: 596 Limon Lane in Brownsville

AUSTIN, TX-- During the 76th legislative session, Sen. Lucio authored Senate Bill 1287, which allows the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs to provide 30-year mortgage loans of up to $25,000 to poor Texas families who agree to "lift themselves up by their own bootstraps."

These families and individuals use the money to finance new homes or rehabilitate existing homes through self-help labor. The Bootstrap program was developed through the work of the Border Affairs Committee, chaired by Sen. Lucio, in conjunction with the Senator's work on the Interim Committee on Housing in 1999.

On Friday, 20 families will be honored for their hard work and perseverance in realizing the American dream of home ownership. Over the past two years, the Community Development Corporation has assisted over 45 families become homeowners through their Mutual Self-Help Program and Texas Bootstrap Loan program. Over the past two years, the CDCB has been able to assist an additional 45 families to become first-time homeowners because of the Bootstrap Program. Families earning no more than $20,000 annually may qualify for the program. The CDCB anticipates starting 30 self-help houses per year under this program.

"The Bootstrap program encourages the self-help spirit of low-income Texas families who are willing to help themselves build and own a home," remarked Sen. Lucio. "Rather than giving them a direct handout, this program provides individuals with the appropriate tools to help themselves. People who participate in this program are great examples of people who successfully acquire home ownership through their efforts."

"The Texas Bootstrap Loan Program has allowed the Community Development Corporation of Brownsville to expand its Self-Help housing efforts into the City of Brownsville. It is an excellent vehicle to provide mortgage financing to families of limited incomes willing to invest their time and talents toward accomplishing the dream of homeownership through their own labor," stated Executive Director. Don Currie of the CDCB.

"The Texas Bootstrap Program creates affordable housing opportunities for families in a manner which ensures long-term value, improves living conditions, and creates a strong community," explained Housing Programs Manager Nick Mitchell-Bennett, also with the CDCB. "As identified in the State of Texas Consolidated Plan, homeownership is not within reach for many families. The purpose of the Texas Bootstrap Program is to develop innovative, economically viable and flexible homeownership options for persons that demonstrate consistent work history and have made a major commitment to building their own home."

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