Florida to suspend housing assistance program applications for low-income residents

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The state Department of Children and Families announced Tuesday that it is set to stop taking applications for a federally funded rental and utility assistance program for residents. low income and unemployed.

The department launched the OUR Florida, or Opportunities for Utilities and Rental Assistance, program last year to help people who are behind on rent or utility payments. Applications will be accepted until Thursday.

“As we prepare to close the OUR Florida portal, I encourage families who may be interested in receiving assistance or who need to submit their application before May 12. There is still time to get the assistance you need. you need,” the Children’s Department and Families Secretary Shevaun Harris said in a statement.

Related: The state of Florida has promised her rent assistance. Then she was expelled.

Money for the program came from $1.4 billion allocated to Florida by the US Treasury Department last year, with about $529 million distributed directly to beneficiaries by local governments with more than 200,000 residents.

The Ministry of Children and Families said more than $1.3 billion had been distributed to more than 228,000 families through the program.

Low-income tenants and people who had been unemployed for at least 90 days before applying were given priority for the money. The agency aims to have “all available funds obligated” to families who are approved for the program by May 27, according to a press release.

Applications will continue to be processed until available funds are used.

“Applications that have already been approved for prospective payments will continue to receive previously approved relief,” the press release reads.

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