Strapped renters get state help from COVID-19 funds

    Urban apartment building
    Photo by Todd Quackenbush on Unsplash.

    In the latest distribution of Wisconsin’s share of federal COVID-19 relief aid, low-income Wisconsin renters who have lost income because of the pandemic will get financial help to pay back rent, security deposits, and related assistance.

    Gov. Tony Evers announced the $25 million Wisconsin Rental Assistance Program, funded from the state’s allotment under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, on Wednesday.

    Aid is available to adult residents with incomes at or below 80% of the median in their county in the month they apply or before. The program provides up to $3,000 in rental payments, security deposits, or both, paid directly to the landlord.

    Agencies belonging to the Wisconsin Community Action Program Association will receive the applications and distribute the funds. The program will be overseen by the state Department of Administration.

    The announcement was Wisconsin’s third in as many days of new spending made possible under the CARES Act. On Monday, the state announced a $75 million grant program for small business along with a $51 million program to support childcare providers. On Tuesday, Evers unveiled $1.17 billion in funding for testing, contact tracing and related public health initiatives to curb COVID-19.

    Erik Gunn
    Senior Reporter Erik Gunn reports and writes on work and the economy, along with related subjects, for the Wisconsin Examiner. He spent 24 years as a freelance writer for Milwaukee Magazine, Isthmus, The Progressive, BNA Inc., and other publications, winning awards for investigative reporting, feature writing, beat coverage, business writing, and commentary. An East Coast native, he previously covered labor for The Milwaukee Journal after reporting for newspapers in upstate New York and northern Illinois. He's a graduate of Beloit College (English Comp.) and the Columbia School of Journalism. Off hours he is the Examiner's resident Springsteen and Jackson Browne fanboy and model railroad nerd.