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Ducey helping renters affected by COVID-19 make their payments

Gov. Doug Ducey, left, answers a question as he is joined by Arizona Department of Health Services Director Dr. Cara Christ as they provide an update on the coronavirus during a news conference at the Arizona State Public Health Laboratory Monday, March 23, 2020, in Phoenix. (Ross D. Franklin/AP)

Gov. Doug Ducey, left, answers a question as he is joined by Arizona Department of Health Services Director Dr. Cara Christ as they provide an update on the coronavirus during a news conference at the Arizona State Public Health Laboratory Monday, March 23, 2020, in Phoenix. (Ross D. Franklin/AP)

Gov. Doug Ducey on March 27 said he’s providing $5 million to help Arizonans who are struggling to make rent because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The new dollars will be included as part of the Rental Eviction Prevention Assistance Program launched by the Arizona Department of Housing. The program will provide monthly rent help for families and individuals who are facing lost income because of the coronavirus.

“Because of COVID-19, many Arizonans are seeing their hours cut or even the loss of their jobs, and Arizona will be there to support them,” Ducey stated in a news release. “We want people to be able to continue making rent while ensuring no one is forced out of their home because they got sick, someone in their family got sick, or they are facing economic hardship. We will continue to make assistance and resources available so families can get through this time and get back on their feet.”

Arizona Department of Housing Director Carol Ditmore stated in the release that the governor’s initiative is important.

“This assistance will provide some measure of relief for many renters, as well as their landlords, during this unprecedented situation that led to an abrupt loss of income,” Ditmore added.

Rental assistance may be made available to:

• Households that have a rental unit in Arizona as a primary residence; and

• Those who have lost income due to COVID-19 that, when annualized, does not exceed 100% of the area median income adjusted for family size for the county.

The Arizona Department of Housing will launch the program on Monday, March 30, 2020. The State Housing Trust Fund is providing $5 million for the program’s initial funding.

Additional funding may be identified for the program as the department assesses program use and need.

Application assistance will be available March 30 through an online application system accessible from the Arizona Department of Housing’s website at azhousing.gov.

Interested applicants who do not have computer access can call the Northern Arizona Council of Governments’ (NACOG) main office at 928-774-1895 to start an application. Office hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

On March 24, Ducey issued an executive order delaying the enforcement of eviction action orders for renters impacted by COVID-19. The order applies to renters who are quarantining because of COVID-19 or who are facing economic hardship because of the outbreak. It will remain in effect for 120 days.

The Governor’s Office provided the information for this story.

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