SAN BENITO, Texas, Feb. 18, 2010 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The San Benito Housing Authority was awarded a $140,000 Affordable Housing Program (AHP) grant from First Community Bank and the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas (FHLB Dallas). The funds will provide very low- to moderate income first-time homebuyers with down payment and closing cost assistance.

The San Benito Housing Authority offers an ongoing, first-time homebuyer program in which qualified applicants may receive assistance with down payment and closing costs on newly constructed or existing homes. The program was originally operated by the city of San Benito, but was passed to the San Benito Housing Authority, a nonprofit organization, in 2007. The program couples multiple grants funds from various sources in order to help more individuals and families purchase a home. 

Crystal Hernandez, Leased Housing Director at the San Benito Housing Authority, said she hopes to assist 20 first-time homebuyers in 2010 by combining the AHP grant with other grants they have received.

"Funding sources like the AHP grant help make the responsibility of buying a house more affordable for our recipients," said Ms. Hernandez. "Our goal is to help recipients purchase a home and then stay in the home. The grant funds are geared toward principal reduction so that the new homeowners can afford the initial upfront costs, and also continue to make the monthly payments."

The San Benito Housing Authority worked with First Community Bank, a member bank of FHLB Dallas, to obtain the AHP grant. Ms. Hernandez said this is the first time the San Benito Housing Authority has partnered with First Community Bank for an AHP grant. She continued by saying it was a wonderful experience and representatives of First Community Bank were always ready and willing to work with them on obtaining this grant.

"First Community Bank is excited about the grant awarded to the San Benito Housing Authority," said Phil Teinert, senior vice president at First Community Bank. "This is another avenue for First Community Bank to partner with a quality local organization to assist in the growth of our community. It has been a pleasure working with the San Benito Housing Authority and the Federal Home Loan Bank, and we look forward to the continued partnership." 

Each year, FHLB Dallas returns 10 percent of its profits in the form of AHP grants issued by its member financial institutions. In 2009, FHLB Dallas awarded $10.5 million in AHP grants to 48 affordable housing projects in its five-state District, including more than $1.65 million in Texas, which will result in the creation or renovation of 248 affordable housing units in the state.

About the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas

The Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas is one of 12 district banks in the FHLBank System created by Congress in 1932. FHLB Dallas, with total assets of $67.3 billion as of September 30, 2009, is a member-owned cooperative that supports housing and community development by providing competitively priced loans and other credit products to more than 900 members and associated institutions in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico and Texas. For more information, visit the FHLB Dallas Web site at fhlb.com.

The Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=3013

Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas
Corporate Communications
(214) 441-8445
www.fhlb.com