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Millions in assistance still available as eviction moratorium set to expire Saturday

$20 to 25 million still available in Palm Beach County
Posted at 6:01 PM, Jul 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-29 18:30:28-04

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — More than 300,000 people in Florida face eviction or foreclosure in the next two months, according to a Household Pulse Survey from the U.S. Census Bureau.

MORE: Assistance still available for those behind on payments

President Joe Biden is calling on Congress to extend the federal eviction moratorium, which is set to expire Saturday.

Palm Beach County Community Services Director James Green said Thursday they are focused on eviction prevention.

He said they still have millions of dollars available to help, and they want to get the word out.

Palm Beach County currently has 1,092 open eviction cases.

Elissa Brown Gregory, senior case manager for financial assistance at Jewish Family Services
Elissa Brown Gregory speaks about the financial assistance available to struggling renters.

"It's just really hard once you're so deep in that hole," said Elissa Brown Gregory, senior case manager for financial assistance at Jewish Family Services.

MORE: Attorney warns of 'avalanche of evictions' as moratorium ends

"Our program is designed to assist families in our community," Gregory said.

She said with help from donors and grants they’ve been able to help renters impacted by COVID-19 in Delray Beach, Boca Raton and Highland Beach.

"Our COVID requirements are a little streamline, so if someone is calling and has been financially impacted by COVID, I do a pre-screen interview over the phone with every requester," Gregory said.

MORE: Landlords face hurdles with eviction moratorium ending

Green said they are urging landlords and renters to apply for rental assistance.

"There's probably about $20 to 25 million remaining that needs to be expended before Sept. 30," Green said.

James Green
Palm Beach County Community Services Director James Green discusses the millions still available to Palm Beach County residents facing eviction.

Green said they are urging landlords and renters to apply for rental assistance.

"I'm absolutely concerned about the eviction moratorium expiring. I'm really concerned about those individuals who don’t know that the assistance is available, and I want to make sure we get the word out and we do what we can to help," Green said.

Palm Beach County

Applications are being accepted for the rental assistance program in Palm Beach County. Households that have not lost income due to COVID-19 may still be eligible for electric and utility assistance. You can apply by going to rentalassistancepbc.org.

St. Lucie County

Rental assistance is also still available for residents in St. Lucie County as well.

The county community services department has helped more than 60 families with nearly $400,000 in funding through the emergency rental assistance (ERA) and eviction diversion program.

The ERA program provides up to 12 months of funds that can be used for past due rent, current rent or up to three months of future rent.

For more information about these programs, who qualifies and how to apply visit www.recoverstlucie.org.

Martin County

Rental and utility assistance in Martin County is being facilitated through the Opportunities for Utilities and Rental Assistance (OUR) Florida Program.

OUR Florida provides renters who qualify with relief on unpaid rent and utility bills, and supports landlords and utilities with relief on lost revenue to support their continued recovery.

The county says the program focuses on low-income renters whose household income is at or below 80% of the Area Median Income (AMI), which varies by county. The program will prioritize renters with income at or below 50% AMI and/or families who have experienced unemployment within the past 90 days.

Martin County's Housing Program works to meet the housing needs of the low, and moderate-income households in the county. Call (772) 288-5456 to learn more about assistance.

Indian River County

The Housing and Rental Assistance office in Indian River County is located at 1800 27th St., Building B, in Vero Beach.
Office hours are Tuesday through Thursday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Residents with questions about housing and rental assistance should call (772) 226-4360 or email at rmiller@ircgov.com.