02.25.2021

BREAKING NEWS on Rental Assistance, PPP loans and $600 one-time payments

BREAKING NEWS on Rental Assistance, PPP loans and $600 one-time payments

So many opportunities and resources available for your family and business. Share with your networks!

Sacramento rental assistance program

Applications for Sacramento Emergency Rental Assistance (SERA) are now being accepted to help low-income residents who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Agency (SHRA), in partnership with the City and the County of Sacramento, through federal and state funding, is offering emergency rent and utilities assistance for renters living anywhere in Sacramento County who have experienced a reduction in household income or other financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  CLICK HERE to download info.

Eligible applicants can receive assistance for past rent and utilities owed from April 1, 2020 to March 31, 2021 and may qualify to have a portion of their rent paid for April, May and June 2021. The total assistance amount available will depend on household need. Priority will be given to households that owe rental arrears.

The application period for the Sacramento Emergency Rental Assistance (SERA) Program Phase 2 will be February 25 – March 19, 2021

The goal is to assist as many families as possible, so we encourage all income-eligible families to apply. SHRA and local community-based organizations will help get these funds out to the community as fast as possible, including those residents who are most difficult to reach due to language and cultural barriers.

Applications will be accepted Feb. 25 through March 19 on SHRA’s website. Landlords can apply for assistance on behalf of their tenants and tenants may also apply on their own behalf.

To be eligible for the assistance, applicants must:

  • Be renting housing in the City or unincorporated County of Sacramento;
  • Have household gross annual income at or below low-income limits ranging from $48,350 for a household of one to $91,150 for a household of 8;
  • Have at least one household member that is unemployed, or has experienced a reduction in household income, incurred significant costs, or has experienced a financial hardship due to COVID-19; AND
  • Demonstrate a risk of being unhoused or housing instability.

Eligible applications will be placed in a computerized random order. Priority will be given to those households who earn 50 percent of the area median income or less, those who have been unemployed for 90 days prior to the application date and to those who owe rent arrears.

The funds can be used to pay rent and utility bills owed that was incurred from April 1, 2020 through March 1, 2021. Immigration status does not impact household eligibility to utilize the State funds.

Those who have previously applied to SERA and/or received funds for rental assistance can and will need to reapply if they have additional rental assistance needs.

Additional details on eligibility requirements and the application process can be found on SHRA’s at shra.org/sera or call 916-449-1266 for additional assistance. Bilingual assistance will be available for applicants at 916-449-1266 or sera@shra.org.

Please don’t forget other COVID-19 resources including Wi-Fi access, youth programs and help accessing financial resources can be found on the City’s COVID relief website.

The third program is the City/County Fines and Fees Reform. Are you sick of paying fines and fees as a resident or business? If so, tell the City/County which ones have the most detrimental impact to you as a resident or business. Please join the City of Sacramento and Sacramento County as we host monthly virtual community conversations with residents to discuss how fines and fees impact their lives. Typically these conversation are attending by elected officials last month we had Vice Mayor Schenirer and this month we had Councilmember Mai Vang.

The virtual conversations occur every third Saturday of the month from 10 – 11:30 a.m. These conversations are part of the Cities & Counties for Fine and Fee Justice reform program that Sacramento City and County last May were chosen to join to reform harmful fines and fees that have detrimental impacts on low-income residents and people of color.

Residents will also be asked to take a survey to help the City and County determine which fines and fees have the most impact to them. City staff have engaged different City departments to gather and identify opportunities for fine and fee reduction and reform, including City Police, Community Development, Public Works, Finance, Utilities, Fire, Youth Parks & Community Enrichment, and Convention and Cultural Services Departments.

City and County staff will analyze community input to determine which fines and fees should be considered for reform and will seek approval from City Council and Sacramento County later on in the year. City and County leadership has committed to reforming at least three fines and fees.

Residents with personal stories about the impacts experienced due to fines and fees are encouraged to attend these virtual events. We will be identifying key community stakeholders to help us engage hard to reach populations and can provide stipends to those in need and impacted. Please share this invite, as you deem appropriate.  

Attached are social media graphics that can be used to share this information.

Register Here or Find Out More: http://www.cityofsacramento.org/fines-fees

Please take the survey, which is available in English/Spanish:

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/MQ8B2GN

For information about this initiative, please contact the City’s Community Engagement Team at CE@cityofsacramento.org.

STATE PROGRAMS:

 Now open: PPP loan application period for small businesses 

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has opened an exclusive 14-day Pay Check Protection (PPP) loan application period for companies and nonprofits with fewer than 20 employees. Learn more and apply by Wed., March 10. 

https://www.sba.gov/page/coronavirus-covid-19-small-business-guidance-loan-resources

 NEW: state of California to provide $600 in one-time relief 

Governor Gavin Newsom signed into law this week a comprehensive package to provide relief Californians impacted by COVID-19. This includes a one-time relief payment of $600 to:

  • All Californian Earned Income Tax recipients
  • Taxpayers with Individual Tax Identification Numbers (ITINs) who did not receive federal stimulus payments and whose income is below $75,000
  • Households enrolled in the CalWORKS program
  • Recipients of SSI/SSP
  • Recipients of Cash Assistance Program for Immigrants (CAPI)

Payments will be provided to these households shortly after they file their 2020 tax returns. Payments dates for SSI/SSP and CAPI recipients are currently under discussion.

Learn more here: https://www.gov.ca.gov/2021/02/23/governor-newsom-signs-legislative-package-providing-urgent-relief-to-californians-experiencing-pandemic-hardship/