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Menendez, Booker announce $35M in rental assistance funding for New Jersey

NEW JERSEY  U.S. Senators Bob Menendez and Cory Booker (both D-N.J.) announced Thursday a total of $35,160,643.26 million in federal housing rental assistance funding for the state of New Jersey in reallocated funds to assist renters facing financial hardship.

The funding was awarded through the U.S. Department of the Treasury from grantees that did not utilize their previous awards under the Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERA).

Those awarded funding are:

  • State of New Jersey – $33,653,052.05
  • Monmouth County – $1,411,916.69
  • Passaic County – $95,674.42

“As many families around the state continue to recover from the economic impacts of the pandemic and struggle with the high cost of housing, this reallocation of rental assistance funding will be a lifeline to help keep them in their homes,” Menendez said. “While this funding is vital, it is just one measure of several that needs to be implemented to address the national housing crisis, which is why I continue to fight for New Jersey to receive more affordable housing dollars in Washington.”

“This funding is another important step toward helping New Jerseyans pay rent, utilities, and other expenses so they can stay in their homes,” Booker said. “I’m glad to see the Emergency Rental Assistance funds allocated to communities across our state and know they will provide significant financial relief to families.”

The U.S. Department of the Treasury announced that 89 state and local grantees have been awarded $690 million in reallocated ERA funds. To date, Treasury has reallocated over $3.5 billion of funds that may have otherwise gone unused, deploying funds to areas with high demonstrated need and creating an incentive for communities to expeditiously connect households and families with this federal aid. Studies have also shown that the distribution of ERA funds has gone to low-income and/or traditionally underserved renters of color.

Even as the American economy continues its recovery from the devastating impact of the pandemic, millions of Americans face deep rental debt and fear evictions and the loss of basic housing security. COVID-19 has exacerbated an affordable housing crisis that predated the pandemic and that has deep disparities that threaten the strength of an economic recovery that must work for everyone.

To meet this need, the ERA program makes funding available to assist households that are unable to pay rent or utilities. Two separate programs have been established: ERA1 provides up to $25 billion under the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, which was enacted on December 27, 2020, and ERA2 provides up to $21.55 billion under the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, which was enacted on March 11, 2021. The funds are provided directly to states, U.S. territories, local governments, and (in the case of ERA1) Indian tribes. Grantees use the funds to provide assistance to eligible households through existing or newly created rental assistance programs.

Sen. Menendez has long been a leader in the fight build more affordable housing. In August 2021,he introduced the Livable Communities Act that encourages local communities to partner strategically to develop bold, innovative solutions that reflect their unique character, while leveraging existing assets, including access to transit to help revitalize neighborhoods, spur economic development, create jobs, and address their affordable housing needs. In 2021, the Senator also secured $100 million to expand access to housing counseling and assistance services for millions of renters and homeowners struggling to remain in their homes amid the economic crisis created by the pandemic.

Jay Edwards

Born and raised in Northwest NJ, Jay has a degree in Communications and has had a life-long interest in local radio and various styles of music. Jay has held numerous jobs over the years such as stunt car driver, bartender, voice-over artist, traffic reporter (award winning), NY Yankee maintenance crewmember and peanut farm worker. His hobbies include mountain climbing, snowmobiling, cooking, performing stand-up comedy and he is an avid squirrel watcher. Jay has been a guest on America’s Morning Headquarters,program on The Weather Channel, and was interviewed by Sam Champion.

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