CoronavirusRental Assistance

STATE OF WASHINGTON (DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE)

STATE OF WASHINGTON
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
1011 Plum Street SE ๏‚Ÿ PO Box 42525 ๏‚Ÿ Olympia, Washington 98504-2525 ๏‚Ÿ (360) 725-4000
www.commerce.wa.gov
July 28, 2020
Greetings,
The Department of Commerce is reaching out to notify you of an upcoming Eviction Rent Assistance Program
(ERAP). The program is intended to prevent evictions by paying past due, current and future rent, targeting
limited resources to those with the greatest needs while working to distribute funds equitably. While the state
eviction moratorium has been extended to October 15, 2020 and renters are still protected, we hope this
program can start to address some of the stress both renters and landlords are facing.
Commerce will distribute approximately $100 million to Consolidated Homeless Grant (CHG) lead grantees and
Office of Homeless youth-serving organizations to operate this new rent assistance program starting August 1,
2020. Up to three months of rent assistance can be paid on an eligible clientโ€™s behalf. You can find program
information on our web page: https://www.commerce.wa.gov/serving-communities/homelessness/
A primary program goal is to promote equity in who is served, with a focus on equity for groups of people who
historically have not been provided equitable access to rent assistance and those who have disproportionately
been impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak: Latinx or Hispanic, young adults, Black or African American, American
Indian and Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander.
In an effort to advance this goal, Commerce is requiring that CHG lead grantees allocate 5 percent of their
funding to sub grant to By and For organizations, to pay the costs associated with outreach to their communities
and with helping people access assistance.
By and For Organizations are operated by and for the community they serve. Their primary mission and history
is serving a specific community and they are culturally based, directed, and substantially controlled and
managed by individuals from the population they serve. At the core of their programs, the organizations
embody the community’s central cultural values. These communities may include ethnic and racial minorities;
immigrants and refugees; individuals who identify as LGBTQ+, individuals with disabilities or who are deaf; and
Native Americans.
We want to ensure that organizations who fit this description are given advance-notice of this upcoming rent
assistance program. We hope that sharing this information in advance will give time for By and For organizations
to become familiar with the program before it is initiated and facilitate smoother partnerships with CHG
grantees.
If you have any questions or need additional information, please contact Tedd Kelleher by email at
tedd.kelleher@commerce.wa.gov.

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