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From: Katie Hoffman <[email protected]> Sent: Thursday, June 16, 2022 3:42 PMTo: Katie Hoffman <[email protected]>Cc: Kristin Kunes <[email protected]>; Morghan Boydston <[email protected]>; Teresa M. Gillotti <[email protected]>Subject: PRESS RELEASE - COVID Emergency Rental Assistance (CERA) Program application period to end June 30, 2022
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Morghan Boydston, Washtenaw County OCED Human Services Manager | [email protected] | 734-544-6762
Kristin Kunes, Washtenaw County OCED Human Services Policy Specialist | [email protected] | 734-366-6853
COVID Emergency Rental Assistance (CERA) Program application period to end June 30, 2022
Michigan renters, landlords encouraged to apply as soon as possible ahead of deadline
Washtenaw County, MI, June 15, 2022 – The Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA) has announced that it will soon have enough applications through the COVID Emergency Rental Assistance (CERA) program to encumber all funds available. Applications for CERA through the online portal will stop being accepted as of Thursday, June 30, 2022, at 9:00pm. Michiganders with rent arrears should apply immediately for potential consideration. It is likely that more applications will be received than funds available. Applications submitted before the deadline will continue to be processed until all the available funds are utilized.
The CERA program proved to be incredibly helpful for those facing economic hardship and potential eviction due to pandemic-related causes. Since the program’s introduction in March 2021:
"MSHDA and the Washtenaw County Office of Community and Economic Development (OCED) have put forth tremendous effort to make sure the CERA program was accessible for thousands of Michiganders," said Kelly Rose, MSHDA's Chief Housing Solutions Officer. "Thanks to federal funding, we have been able to facilitate much-needed peace of mind to residents, helping them catch up on their rent and utility costs while also ensuring landlords can recoup owed rent. Though that funding will be fully expended later this year, MSHDA and OCED remain committed to helping residents with housing needs where possible."
Once the CERA portal closes on June 30, residents who have not applied and are facing eviction should reach out to Legal Services of South Central Michigan – Washtenaw County Office at 734-665-6181. MSHDA is also evaluating other eviction prevention funding options like HOME-ARP and the Housing and Community Development Fund.
Funding for the COVID Emergency Rental Assistance (CERA) program came from the federal coronavirus aid package passed in December 2020 and the American Rescue Plan Act, which allocated $1.1 billion to the State of Michigan to be used directly on rental and utility assistance for individuals and families financially impacted by the pandemic. The response to the program has been overwhelming as many in need have sought to use CERA to secure housing stability. In fact, the program may end up with more applications than funds available, but MSHDA is focused on processing as many applications as possible received by the June 30, 2022, cutoff date.
For more information on CERA, visit www.washtenaw.org/cera.
Washtenaw County Office of Community and Economic Development (OCED) is committed to stepping out of traditional government roles to drive long-term system changes that increase equity and opportunity. Informed by data and resident voices, we deliver services, invest resources, shape public policy, lead initiatives, and amplify the impact of community partners to that end.
The Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA), established in 1966, provides financial and technical assistance through public and private partnerships to create and preserve safe and decent affordable housing, engage in community economic development activities, develop vibrant cities, towns and villages, and address homeless issues.