The US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) awarded $26.3m to 98 fair housing organizations and other non-profit agencies located in 37 states and Washington, DC, The funds, awarded through HUD's Fair Housing Initiatives Program, will be used to investigate alleged housing discrimination, educate consumers of rights and responsibilities within the Fair Housing Act, and promote equal housing opportunities. "In 2010, the fight for fair housing across America continues," said HUD assistant secretary for fair housing and equal opportunity, John Trasviña, in an e-mailed statement. "[The recipients] will help HUD enforce the law and educate the public about their rights and responsibilities under the law." The awards include $3m to eight groups that will conduct enforcement, education and outreach activities designed to address discriminatory lending. A list of award recipients is available to download here. The grants come the same week a House Resolution, HR 476 or the Housing Fairness Act of 2009, made its way to a House Financial Services subcommittee hearing. The bill would authorize $20m annually for a nationwide study of discrimination in housing and mortgage lending. “HUD has not always fulfilled its obligation to ensure that our money is spent in ways that affirmatively further fair housing,” Trasviña told House lawmakers Wednesday. “In this new day, however, there is a Department-wide commitment to incorporate our mandate to affirmatively furthering fair housing into all of our work so that we can fulfill our shared goal of truly integrated and balanced living patterns.” Write to Diana Golobay.