City Council approves $5.59 million in additional emergency rent and utilities assistance

SPOKANE, Wash. – In the City Council meeting Monday, May 9, council members voted to approve the City of Spokane’s request to provide $5.59 million in rental assistance to Spokane residents. Funds were awarded by the Washington State Department of Commerce via the Emergency Rent Assistance Program.

“The City applied for additional funds aimed at staving off evictions and is pleased to receive these critical funds from Commerce that will be distributed to those most likely to become homeless,” said Jenn Cerecedes, Director of the City’s Community, Housing and Human Services Department .According to Cerecedes, the funds aim to prevent evictions by paying both past due and future rent and utilities for those at risk and will be distributed equitably based on population demographics. Eligible households must meet all four of the initial screening criteria to be eligible for rent or utility assistance.These criteria are:Someone in the household has qualified for unemployment or experienced a reduction in income, significant costs incurred, or experienced financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic.You have current housing instability or risk of housing instability, which may include unpaid rental fees or anticipation of inability to pay future rent.Your household income is at or below 80% of the Area Median IncomeYour household resides within the City of Spokane boundaries.The application process will be announced on the City’s website after details are finalized.Since last June, the City has distributed nearly all of the $27 million in funding previously awarded for rental assistance received from the US Treasure and State Commerce departments, benefitting nearly 2,500 households. The Carl Maxey Center, which prioritizes assistance to African American and BIPOC households, continues to accept applications.

SNAP processes emergency rent assistance applications for Spokane County residents.

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