Maryland Emergency Rental Assistance Fund Now Available
Governor Larry Hogan has just submitted a $1.08 billion supplemental budget for Fiscal Year 2022 that expands critical rental assistance programs, restores key funding for transportation infrastructure projects, and increases funding for minority-serving colleges and universities. The supplemental budget allocates federal emergency rental assistance of $258 million, including $193 million through the Maryland Eviction Prevention Partnership, which supports local rental and utility assistance programs, $40 million through the Assisted Housing Relief Program, which serves rental units in multifamily projects with finances by DHCD’s Community Development Administration using state funds or federal resources, $20 million will be reserved, so that it can be rapidly deployed based on need as the programs roll out, and $5 million for program case management, administration, and outreach to ensure eligible landlords and tenants, including minority populations and those in especially hard-hit areas, are aware of the relief.
What Does the Maryland Emergency Rental Assistance Provide
The Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development will provide help directly to local jurisdictions through the Maryland Eviction Partnership Program to support local rental assistance efforts and to property management on behalf of tenants residing in affordable rental properties that received federal or state financing through the Assisted Housing Relief Program.
This relief fund helps low-income families catch up on rent and also helps property owners recover lost rental income. The State of Maryland offers this assistance through federal funds. It can cover up to eighteen months of rent lost during the pandemic and potential future rent as well. In a press release, Secretary Kenneth Holt of the DHCD announced that Maryland will now receive $204 million. This is the second round of federal funding to continue the state’s Emergency Rental Assistance Program.
U.S. Treasury policies require the State of Maryland to prioritize ERAP assistance for the following two groups:
- Households who have annual income at or below 50% of the area median income (AMI), as determined by HUD
- Households who have one or more individuals who are unemployed at the time of ERAP application AND have not been employed during the last 90 days
For bulk tenant rent relief programs using ERAP funds through the State of Maryland, assistance is prioritized for tenants in properties that provide income-based housing and/or have a high proportion of tenants with income under 50% AMI. Properties include:
- Housing developments that have received assistance from DHCD (such as low-income housing tax credit properties)
- Programs operated by Public Housing Authorities, such as Public Housing or Housing Choice Vouchers/Section 8
- Class C & D multifamily housing properties in census tracts that have been identified as a high priority for rental assistance by the Urban Institute. Class C & D properties typically serve lower income families.
Local jurisdictions will operate rental assistance programs independently. So, select your county of residence on their official site to view the program details and how to apply.