The Treasury Department has a reminder for state and local governments: Eliminate undue documentation to more quickly get Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) in the hands of people who need it.
The department published examples of simplified ERA eligibility forms that are currently being used effectively and sent those samples to all ERA grantees. It will also host information sessions and offer technical support.
“While Treasury has repeatedly published clear guidance discouraging undue documentation burdens that limit access for eligible families, we continue to hear about programs that will not accept self-attestations, and others that are adding documentation requirements that Treasury does not require ,” said Deputy Secretary Adeyemo. “State and local agencies administering emergency rental assistance should make full use of the documentation flexibilities provided by Treasury, and we hope that publishing these sample forms will make it even easier for them to do so with the urgency this moment necessitates.”
Treasury also reiterated its statutory obligation to reallocate funds from underperforming jurisdictions beginning in the fall.
“Treasury will take every action necessary to enable these funds to reach as many people in need as possible,” the agency stated in a press release. “Treasury encourages those who need help to apply for ERA funding even if rental assistance funds in their area appear to be moving slowly. In some jurisdictions, having an application in the system awaiting review can help prevent an eviction , and in many places, money is beginning to move more quickly as programs are created.”
Treasury cited Virginia as a place that has effectively implemented federal guidance and ramped up its program. The state is the second-highest nationwide distributor of ERA funds, which is in part due to its use of fact-specific proxies for household income.
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