CASPER, Wyo. – People who need help paying rent, utility and internet bills due to the COVID-19 pandemic in Wyoming may be eligible for assistance under the Emergency Home Assistance Program. rental.
Wyoming began accepting applications for the program on April 29. People can apply online.
The program is administered by the Wyoming Department of Family Services with assistance from the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services.
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âWyoming received $ 200 million in federal funding for the program, an initiative from the US Treasury passed by the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 and extended by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021,â the Wyoming DFS states. âUnder the new federal guidelines, $ 180 million is available for direct financial assistance for rent, utilities, internet payments and housing stability services, while $ 20 million is available for rent, utilities, internet payments and housing stability services. help with requests and administrative costs. The new guidelines extended the program until December 31, 2021. “
The program has four eligibility criteria:
- One or more people in the household are required to pay rent on a house in Wyoming or have unpaid rent on a previous residence located in Wyoming. If living on the Wind River Reservation, renters may be eligible for assistance through the East Shoshone ERAP or the North Arapaho ERAP.
- Total household income is equal to or less than eighty percent (80%) of the region’s median income.
- One or more people within the household qualified for unemployment benefits or suffered financial loss due, directly or indirectly, to COVID-19.
- One or more people in the household may demonstrate a risk of homelessness or housing stability
âEligible households can get assistance with current and future unpaid rent, Internet and utility payments,â says the Wyoming DFS. âEligible utility costs include electricity, energy costs (fuel, fuel oil, propane), water and sewer, and Internet service (up to $ 50 per month). Other eligible expenses, made on a case-by-case basis, may include reasonable relocation costs, security deposits and reasonable late fees. “
âUnpaid invoices must be for services as of March 13, 2020 and may be on a former Wyoming residence. There is no monetary limit and eligible applications can receive assistance for up to 15 months.
Tenants can apply and landlords can apply with the written permission of their tenant.
“ERAP pays homeowners and utility companies directly for unpaid bills on behalf of eligible Wyoming tenants,” the Wyoming DFS states. “Payments will be made by the State of Wyoming, so owners must be a registered seller with the Wyoming State Auditor’s Office at sao.wyo.gov/vendors. The fastest way to receive payment is through direct deposit. “
There are also community organizations in most counties that can offer assistance in applying for the program:
âFor ERAP support, the call center hours are 9 am to 6 pm Monday through Friday,â Wyoming DFS says. “The free phone number is 1-877-WYO-ERAP.”