Nassau announces $6 M rent relief program for struggling tenants

Nassau County Executive Laura Curran announced a new program that will give assistance to hundreds of people in the county struggling to pay their rent due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The program will use $6 million in federal Community Development Block Grants to give 900 renters up to $2,500 a month for three months to help them pay their rent if they’ve been unable to make payments due to the coronavirus.

“We all are reading about the new federal stimulus deal. I think it’s a good start,” said Curran. “But as it relates to housing, there’s a lot to sort out. We at the counties are closer to the ground, and we don’t want to waste time getting help to the folks who need it.”

The program will be overseen by the Community Development Corporation of Long Island (CDCLI), which is aiming to create “as streamlined a process as possible,” according to Gwen O’Shea, president and CEO of CDCLI.

Starting this week, applicants will be able to fill out a form online or call a 1-800 number to speak to CDCLI staff. There will be staff to help people speaking English, Spanish and Creole.

“We’ll have that available for a few weeks,” said O’Shea. “We want to give everyone a chance to learn about the program, to feel comfortable with the program, and then to submit some preliminary information.”

Once applications are submitted, CDCLI will be holding a lottery to pick the 900 people to receive the aid. They will then have to finish the application process to get the money.

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