Amherst to provide $250K in emergency rental assistance

  • Amherst Town Hall FILE PHOTO

  • Amherst Town Hall FILE PHOTO

Staff Writer
Published: 7/7/2020 4:38:51 PM

AMHERST – Income-eligible residents who have lost earnings or have seen their wages drop during the coronavirus pandemic can get short-term emergency rental assistance.

The Amherst Municipal Affordable Housing Trust Fund and town on Tuesday announced that $250,000 is available for this rental assistance, which can be provided for up to three months.

“This is for renters experiencing a loss of income due to COVID-19,” said Brianna Sunryd, the town’s communications manager.

The money comes from the trust’s reserve account, though is expected to be reimbursed in the future by the federal CARES Act.

The program will be administered by Community Action Pioneer Valley and will provide a range of rental subsidies depending on how big an apartment is and the size of the family.

For households earning 80% or less of the area median income, meaning from $47,850 for a one-person household to $68,300 for a four-person household, these subsidies will be up to $650 per month for a one-bedroom apartment and up to $1,100 per month for a three-bedroom apartment.

Applicants will be selected by lottery and must document a loss of income due to the pandemic. Preference will be given for families with children under the age of 18. 

In addition, most people living in state or federal subsidized housing are not eligible for the program.

For more information and to apply online by Aug. 6, go to Community Action Pioneer Valley’s website at www.communityaction.us/amherstrentalassistance.

Online applicants will be contacted by email and sent a secure link to upload verification documents to complete the application.

Scott Merzbach can be reached at smerzbach@gazettenet.com.


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