Washington, D.C. – Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley announced today that the U.S. Department of Treasury has awarded an additional $82 million to the Oregon Housing Finance Agency for the Hardest Hit Fund program. This brings a total of $220 million in federal assistance to Oregon for foreclosure-prevention assistance.
“The only way we are going to get our economy back on track is to address the foreclosure crisis that is crippling families across Oregon,” said Merkley. “This funding will help keep families in their homes and stabilize Oregon housing markets until housing prices recover.”
A total of $220 million has been awarded to Oregon since President Obama first announced the Hardest Hit Fund in February 2010. The fund provides funds to states hit hard by the economic and housing market downturn so they can implement programs to meet the local challenges homeowners are facing.
Oregon’s state housing agency has flexibility in determining how to target the additional funds. The agency expects that the program will become available to homeowners in January 2011. Under the Hardest Hit Fund, states are already working to implement a variety of targeted programs to help struggling homeowners, including assistance to help unemployed homeowners pay their monthly mortgage; reinstatement assistance to bring delinquent homeowners current on their mortgage; principal reduction for homeowners who are underwater; assistance with second liens; facilitation of short sales; and relocation assistance for families that cannot stay in their home.