ANNAPOLIS, MD—Governor Larry Hogan on Thursday announced that the State of Maryland is eligible for an estimated $402,439,000 in federal rental assistance made available through the Consolidated Appropriations Act. The state officially filed its application to the U.S. Treasury Department on January 8, ahead of the January 12 deadline. The majority of the funding will be administered by the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development, with local jurisdictions managing the remainder.
“COVID-19 has caused incredible hardships for the people of our state,” said Governor Hogan. “With the addition of this expected funding, more than half a billion dollars in support will be dedicated to keeping Maryland renters safe in their homes during this deadly pandemic.”
Earlier this week, Governor Hogan introduced the RELIEF Act of 2021, an emergency stimulus and tax relief package that will provide more than $1 billion for Maryland working families, small businesses, and those who have lost their jobs as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The funding can be used for rent, utilities, home energy costs, arrears, and other housing expenses resulting from the pandemic. The state must wait for the issuance of regulatory language from the federal government to deploy funding. Marylanders should monitor local and state government housing agency websites for updates.
“As soon as we receive this important funding from the federal government, we will use all methods at our disposal to quickly deploy it to Marylanders who need it most,” said Secretary Kenneth C. Holt. “This means we will continue our successful strategy of distributing funding through a multipronged approach—directly to local jurisdictions, nonprofit partners, and property management.”
More than $100 million of state, local, and federal funds have already been allocated for rental assistance and eviction prevention, providing relief to thousands of Maryland households. This includes more than $41 million for pandemic relief programs administered by the Department of Housing and Community Development. The department has administered funds through the Maryland Eviction Prevention Partnership, which supports local rental assistance programs, and the Assisted Housing Relief Program, which serves rental units in multifamily projects financed by DHCD’s Community Development Administration using state funds or federal resources. The department will update its website as information on programs, eligibility, and timing becomes available.
On March 16, Governor Hogan issued an emergency order that prohibits Maryland courts from ordering the eviction of any tenant who can demonstrate that their inability to pay rent was the result of COVID-19—for example, because of lost or reduced employment, needing to care for a school-aged child, because they are diagnosed with or under investigation for COVID-19. The order remains in effect during the state of emergency.