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Dallas renews rental assistance program with $50 million in federal money

The newest round of money also will allow people to receive financial help for more than one year, depending on the availability of remaining funds and their application.

By Lauren Girgis

The Dallas City Council approved a deal Wednesday to add more than $50 million in federal money to programs to help with rent and utilities.

To qualify for help with rent, Dallas residents must have an annual income at or below 80% of the area median income, or $48,000 for a single-person household. The program will prioritize those who are at or below 50% of the area median income, or $30,200 for a single-person household, and applicants where at least one member of the household is unemployed and has been for 90 days prior to the application. For a family of four, an annual income of 80% AMI is at or below $ 68,950, and an AMI of 50% is at or below $43,100.

The new funds allow the city to remove a cap that only allowed applicants to receive $1,500 of support each month. The newest round of money also will allow people to receive financial help for more than one year, depending on the availability of remaining funds and their application.

Applications can be submitted at dallasrentrelief.com, and people must submit proof of income and of job loss. After an application is approved, payments can be processed within three weeks and will be made to the renter’s landlord or to an applicant’s personal account.

The Texas Rent Relief Program has paid about $382 million to nearly 60,000 households in the state since the application opened in February. The average assistance amount each household received is $6,381, indicating that people were seeking help with past rent — not simply one month. In Dallas, about $61 million of assistance has been given to more than 9,000 households.

The 75243 zip code, encompassing Lake Highlands and far northeast Dallas, received the most funds, with 549 households given more than $3 million, according to the Texas Rent Relief Program dashboard. The 75150 zip code, located in Mesquite, received the second-most funds with 386 households given more than $2 million.

In order to support the program’s administration, including positions, technology and equipment, $7.5 million will not go directly to applicants for rental assistance.

On Thursday, the Biden administration extended the federal eviction moratorium until July 31.

However, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stated this is likely the last time the moratorium gets extended. If a renter receives an eviction notice, he or she can fill out the CDC’s eviction protection declaration if they meet the agency’s qualifications.

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