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Press Release: SPHA Receives Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) Program Grant from HUD

ST. PETERSBURG, FL (FEBRUARY 28, 2024) - The St. Petersburg Housing Authority (SPHA) is pleased to announce that it has been awarded a Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) Program grant in the amount of $104,546 by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the largest amount of all the new grantees in Florida. The grant enables coaching, training, and savings accounts to build assets and economic independence for participants in SPHA's FSS Program.

HUD announced over $128 million to 835 Public Housing Agencies (PHAs) and Project Based Rental Assistance (PBRA) owners for the 2023 Renewal and New Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) Program grants. HUD's Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public and Indian Housing, Richard Monocchio, made the announcement on February 14, 2024.

"This grant is a testament to SPHA's commitment to empowering our residents with the tools they need for success," said SPHA President/CEO Michael Lundy. "The FSS Program aligns seamlessly with our mission to promote self-sufficiency, and this funding will enable us to further enhance the lives of our FSS participants."

"I am proud of the dedicated efforts of the St. Petersburg Housing Authority team in receiving the largest FSS Program grant in Florida," said SPHA Board Chairman James Dates. "As we move forward, SPHA remains committed to creating opportunities for stronger communities."

"Financial literacy, job training and educational opportunities are some of the resources the FSS program connects HUD-assisted families to so that they have the chance to find employment and build assets," said HUD Secretary Marcia L. Fudge. "HUD remains committed to working with our local partners to empower residents and promote economic justice for all Americans."

The FSS program is a voluntary initiative offered to families in HUD-assisted housing. Participants receive coaching, referrals to services, and establish a family escrow savings account. FSS Program Coordinators provide coaching and develop local strategies to connect participating families with public and private resources. These resources aim to increase their earned income and financial empowerment, reduce or eliminate the need for welfare assistance, and facilitate progress toward economic independence and self-sufficiency.

"Regardless of how much money one might make, where they live, whether or not they receive assistance, every person in this country deserves to have the sense of security for their families that comes with consistent saving," said Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Richard Monocchio. "We are thrilled to offer the benefits of the FSS program to more participants than ever before."

The FSS program is the nation's largest asset-building program for low-income families. In 2015, Congress authorized PBRA owners to run FSS programs. Last year was the first year that PBRA owners were allowed to apply for funding.

Learn more about SPHA's FSS Program:

SPHA is the leading affordable housing provider in the city of St. Petersburg, serving more than 4,000 low-income households. SPHA's mission is to provide safe, sanitary, accessible, decent, and affordable housing to eligible citizens of the city of St. Petersburg, while enhancing and promoting resident self-sufficiency.


The St. Petersburg Housing Authority Central Office.

The St. Petersburg Housing Authority Central Office.




About The St. Petersburg Housing Authority (SPHA):

An independent quasi-governmental entity and a political subdivision of the State of Florida, operating under Chapter 421 Florida Statutes, SPHA is the local administrative agency for housing assistance programs funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). SPHA offers a variety of programs and services that provide affordable rental housing to low-income families, seniors, veterans, and the disabled in the greater St. Petersburg region. For more information, visit