Douglas County Rental Assistance Program Slowly Processing Applications
By Jack Williams , Managing Editor and Reporter Nebraska Public Media News
Aug. 18, 2020, 1:45 p.m. ·
A Douglas County rental assistance program funded by CARES Act money has approved only about 10% of the applications it’s gotten. The program began in late July to help residents financially impacted by the pandemic. So far, the program has received almost 1,800 applications and has approved 178 of them. Last week, the program removed a rule that only allowed four months of rental assistance. The $4,000 maximum benefit could change as well.
“Going forward we will probably revisit the dollar amount as well because people who may have exhausted their back-due rent of $4,000 are going to still have to pay rent for the balance of the year and CARES dollars are available for the balance of the year,” Douglas County Commissioner Jim Cavanaugh said at a hearing Tuesday. “These are types of things that we take from these hearings and try to implement in improving the programs going forward.”
Hundreds of applications have been held-up because landlords haven’t provided Douglas County with the required paperwork to process the assistance. Almost 500 applications have been denied because applicants exceeded income requirements. Just over $300,000 in rental assistance has been approved since the program was implemented July 27.