PRINCE GEORGE'S COUNTY, Md. — Prince George's County Executive Angela Alsobrooks is relaunching a multi-million-dollar renter's assistance program for those impacted by COVID-19.
Back in May, $8 million was made available for Prince George’s County renters impacted by coronavirus through the county’s Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP). Because of incomplete applications filled out by renters, Alsobrooks said only $2.1 million in funding was disbursed.
This time around, the County said they’ve made a big change in how the program is being implemented so that the remaining funding gets to those who need it most.
"We don't want people who need this assistance to go without it, which is why the reimagined relaunch of the rental assistance program actually puts the responsibility and onus on the landlord, and actually gives them the opportunity as well to file on behalf of renters," Alsobrooks said.
On Tuesday, Alsobrooks announced that $6 million in funding was still available through the emergency assistance program launched back in May.
"We know we have a very large number of individuals who need rental assistance," she said. "The challenge we had is that we were actually not seeing the numbers we expected in terms of applicants because many were filing incomplete applications with missing information when we were trying to call to get follow-up information."
The deadline for submitting applications for this program is Tuesday, Nov. 10, but funds are being disbursed on a first-come-first-served basis so Alsobrooks is encouraging landlords to apply immediately.
"Landlords must show that the tenants have a valid lease agreement, the tenant's annual income does not exceed 80% of the area median income, as determined by HUD, and the household has a COVID-19 triggering event," Alsobrooks said.
COVID-19 triggering events include:
- Being laid off
- Place of employment has closed
- Reduction in hours of work
- Staying home to care for children due to closure of day care and/or school
- Lost child or spousal support
- Unable to find employment due to COVID-19
- Unwilling or unable to participate in your previous employment due to existing underlying health conditions that may place you at a higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19, according to CDC guidelines
According to the new iteration of this program, owners, landlords or property managers may apply for each tenant’s passed due rental payments beginning on or after April 1, 2020. Disbursements will be based on the actual rent and are capped at $1,800 per month for up to six months.
If you are at risk of losing your rental housing or are facing a utility shut-off due to a COVID-19 related financial crisis, this program is for you. For more information on how to apply CLICK HERE.