East Baton Rouge and Lafayette parishes have received about $13 million in stop gap federal funding to address housing needs, officials announced Thursday afternoon.

Most of the money — about $11 million — will stay in East Baton Rouge, officials with the Department of Housing and Urban Development said in a brief Thursday press conference.

The money can be used to repair houses or assist people who have become homeless, according to Harriet Tregoning, HUD principal deputy assistant secretary for community planning and development.

The city-parish has not yet determined how the money will be distributed or when residents may receive the assistance, said Gail Grover, the mayor's assistant chief administrative officer.

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She said the money would help those whose post-flood expenses outstrip their resources, including Small Business Association grants and individual assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

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Following large disasters such as Hurricane Katrina, HUD has distributed hundreds of millions of dollars on behalf of the federal government to encourage long-term recovery. Louisiana's congressional delegation has pushed for such funding to rebuild after the August floods, but Thursday, officials said they could not predict whether and when it will come through, saying the decision still lies with Congress.

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