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Additional $9.9M in rental assistance available in Richland County

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Richland County has been awarded an additional $9.9 million in federal funding to help renters affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The county approved more than $10 million in aid requests through its Emergency Rental Assistance Program, enacted last December and launched in April. A second round of funding became available through a similar federal program enacted in March.

“We understand there is still significant need for additional rental assistance,” Mike King, Richland County assistant director of emergency services, said in a news release from the county. “We are pleased to have been allocated additional funds, which will allow us to continue the program into the near future.”

The programs provide up to 12 months of rental and utility assistance, plus an additional three months if funds are available and determined by the county to be necessary to ensure housing stability. Applicants for the second round of funding could qualify for up to 18 months of assistance, according to the release.

“I am proud of the efforts of Mike King and our ERAP team, and I am excited Richland County will be providing more financial assistance to our residents in need,” County Administrator Leonardo Brown said.

Landlords can also apply for assistance on behalf of eligible renters. More information, including eligibility requirements, is available online at richlandcountysc.gov/ERA or by calling 855-216-9198.

The application for both programs is the same, according to the county. As the remaining funds from the first program are exhausted, applicants will be transitioned to the second.

Richland Library is offering application assistance. Appointments can be scheduled by calling 803-509-8371, texting 803-386-8506 or emailing socialworker@richlandlibrary.com.

Reach Melinda Waldrop at 803-726-7542.

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