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Applications available for rent assistance through two grants from state

Updated: Feb. 9, 2021 at 9:09 PM CST
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LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - The City of Lubbock has received nearly half a million dollars from the state to use for two grants called Texas Emergency Rent Assistance Grant and the Texas Eviction Diversion Program. Now, Community Development wants landlords and tenants who qualify to turn in fully filled-out applications.

The Lubbock City Council voted on a resolution to receive the money from the state on Tuesday.

If approved by Community Development, the Texas Rent Assistance Grant can provide funding for up to six months including five months unpaid rent and at least one month currently due.

Another grant, the Texas Eviction Diversion Program is for individuals currently in an eviction case.

At an eviction hearing, Judge Susan Rowley says she will say something like this to both tenants and landlords:

“And I’m saying to both parties, landlord and tenant, ‘Do you both agree to participate in the diversion program?,’ said Judge Rowley.

Judge Rowley said if she gets a “yes” from both parties, as the Justice of Peace, she will give a referral to the City of Lubbock’s Community Development for their application to be of highest priority for Community Development to go through for approval.

Judge Rowley says if approved, this will help get the funding to landlords faster and could drop an eviction case as soon as 60 days after registering.

The biggest qualification is tenants must prove they are at 80 percent of the median income. The median income in Lubbock is approximately 66 thousand dollars a year. Individuals must prove the pandemic has financially impacted their life such as a job loss or furlough.

“Please talk with your landlords to see if they will do the diversion program with you.”

Judge Rowley says the diversion program will pay for past and future rent payments unlike the national CDC moratorium that pauses evictions until the end of March. The national moratorium makes individuals pay for unpaid rent payments eventually, while the grants do not.

“It’s a fabulous program.”

You can get the application emailed or mailed to you. You can also download the application at mylubbock.us/communitydevelopment

Applications can also be picked up at 1708 Crickets Avenue, inside the Lubbock Housing Authority building.

To drop off your application, you can drop it off at 1708 Crickets Avenue or mail it in. E-mailing the application is not allowed. The application must be filled out in full or it will be returned.

On a similar note, the state has announced today it will roll out a state program to distribute over a billion dollars in rent assistance but applications will not be accepted until February 15.

The county intends to push out their rental assistance program soon too.

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