Beginning Monday, Riverside County residents struggling to pay their rent because of public health lockdowns that impacted their finances can submit applications to qualify for a new round of rental assistance initiated by the county in partnership with several nonprofits.
“Riverside County is eager to see this next round of assistance administered in a quick and efficient manner to help as many residents as possible, and we’re grateful to our nonprofit partners for their work getting these funds to folks who need it the most,” Board of Supervisors Chair Karen Spiegel said.
Last month, the board approved $57.26 million for the county’s Rental Relief Fund, which was established on June 2. The current allotment was received directly from the federal government, separate from the original $33 million in Coronavirus Aid, Relief & Economic Security Act money that went into the rental assistance program last summer.
As before, Palm Desert-based nonprofit Lift to Rise and Riverside- based United Way of the Inland Valleys are serving as administrators of the relief effort.
Any resident who does not earn more than 80% above the county’s annual per capita median income of $28,596 is eligible to apply for assistance. However, priority will be given to those households in which earnings are less than 50% of the median, and where one or more members of the home has been left unemployed because of the lockdowns, according to Lift to Rise and United Way.
Applicants for relief will have to present documentation of financial impacts that occurred anytime between March 13, 2020, and now.
Under the previous assistance program, renters were invited to apply for up to three months of financial aid — with no repayment requirements — or receive a maximum cash infusion of $3,500, whichever was less. However, the new round will permit up to 12 months of rental coverage for qualifying applicants, officials said.
Funds are generally paid to landlords, covering tenants who are in arrears.
The current program is slated to remain available until the end of the year. Over 3,000 applicants who sought help in the last round but didn’t receive it are already on the waiting list for financial relief in the new program, according to the county.
Information and applications can be accessed via http://www.UnitedLift.org.