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COVID-19 rent aid open to Omaha tenants, landlords April 5

(WVLT)
Published: Mar. 30, 2021 at 5:44 PM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - The City of Omaha is rolling out its emergency rental assistance program next week.

According to an announcement from Mayor Jean Stothert’s office, Omaha has received $22,248,295.10 in funds from the U.S. Treasury’s office for use in providing rental and utility assistance for eligible applicants — renters and landlords.

The program does not provide mortgage assistance.

The city expects to be able to provide assistance to 10,000-12,000 renters with the program, which will be administered by the Metro Area Continuum of Care for the Homeless, or MACCH, which will working with other nonprofits to roll out the program. In general, approved funds will be paid directly to landlords or utility providers.

The registration portal is expected to open for Douglas County residents Monday, April 5 at macchconnect.org. Starting that same day, those requiring assistance by phone will be able to call 211 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays and from 8 a.m. to noon Saturdays.

In order to qualify, an applicant must be a U.S. citizen or legal resident with their name on a lease for a rental within Omaha city limits. According to the news release, applicants must also be:

  • At or below 80% of the median annual income based on household size. For single-person households, that translates to $48,750 annually; $55,700 for two-person households; $62,650 for three-person households; $69,600 for households of four; $75,200 for five; $80,750 for six; $76,350 for seven; and $91,900 for households of eight.
  • Able to demonstrate financial loss due to COVID-19 by at least one person in the household, or have at least one person there receiving a pay cut or unemployment assistance.
  • On the verge of housing instability or homelessness.

During the application process, applicants will be required to submit:

  • Proof of being financially impacted by COVID-19, including verification of loss of employment, a layoff notice, an unemployment letter, or some other signed attestation of impact.
  • Current lease or rental agreement that states the applicant’s name and address.
  • Rental statement or notice indicating a balance of rent owed.
  • Driver’s license or another form of government-issued identification for the head of the household.
  • Proof of income of all contributing household members, such as1040s, recent pay stubs, unemployment claims, or other contribution statements.

Property owners and managers will need to submit additional documentation, including proof of ownership and a W9. They can also submit an application on behalf of their tenants but must have written authorization to do so, proof of which will be required during the application process.

“Providing financial help for rent and utility costs is one of the top priorities in my 2021 Pandemic Recovery Priority Checklist. This program continu8es our distribution of funds for assistance throughout our city,” Stothert said in the news release.

Similar assistance portals are already in place on macchconnect.org for Sarpy County residents as well as non-metro Nebraska and Iowa residents.

Correction: An earlier version of this story contained an incorrect date label. 6 News regrets the error.

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