BALTIMORE — Mayor Jack Young committed $13 million of Community Development Block Grant-CV (CDBG-CV) funds for the establishment of a temporary rental assistance program.
“The impact of this COVID-19 emergency on housing stability has been a concern of mine from the very start,” Mayor Young said. “We acted quickly by calling for a halt on evictions, but the moratorium on evictions is not enough on its own. We need to prepare for the ongoing crisis caused by lost income and the risk of evictions caused by COVID-19 impacts.”
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the “CARES Act”), contains several housing-related provisions, including the CDBG-CV funds that localities are slated to receive. Mayor Young indicated that the program should be operational within the next few weeks.
“In addition to the human cost of families potentially becoming homeless, the eviction, shelter, and re-housing process would be a high cost for both landlords and the City,” Mayor Young said. “The use of these funds to stave off evictions potentially caused by COVID-19 will help workers who have lost their income and are behind on their rent. Protecting renters from eviction during the COVID-19 recovery phase will also help protect the city’s overall economic health.”
The City’s Housing Commissioner, Michael Braverman, is working with stakeholders, including housing advocates and the rental industry, to establish the rental assistance program.
Mayor Young also thanked the Annie E. Casey Foundation, which is providing technical assistance to help develop the program.