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$20M HUD grant doubles legal aid to eviction

WASHINGTON – The Department of Housing and Urban Development is doubling the size of its eviction protection program designed to fund legal aid for tenants who want to stay in their homes.

The $20 million HUD grant announced Monday will not provide any direct rent relief; instead, it will fund legal advice and representation for families at risk of eviction. Funds will be distributed to 11 nonprofit organizations and government agencies through the Eviction Protection Grant Program, with grants ranging from $1 million to $2.4 million. Recipients of the new wave of funding include Portland, Maine-based Pine Tree Legal Assistance and the City of San Antonio, Texas.

HUD launched the Eviction Protection Grant Program last November with an initial $20 million awarded to 10 legal services providers.

HUD Secretary Marcia Fudge described the new funding as doubling down on a proven method of alleviating the financial damage caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

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“We must continue to do everything we can to help people obtain quality housing,” Fudge said in a statement. “We know that access to legal services and diversion programs works during evictions. It helps people avoid evictions and protects tenants’ rights.”

The funding can also be used to help landlords access emergency rental assistance and will generally help reduce cases in eviction courts across the country, Fudge said.

And the grant program is designed to particularly help people of color — they are disproportionately represented among the evictions — as well as tenants with limited English skills and people with disabilities, the department said.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, transcribed or redistributed without permission.

https://www.local10.com/news/politics/2022/05/09/20-million-hud-grant-doubles-size-of-eviction-legal-help/ $20M HUD grant doubles legal aid to eviction

Justin Scacco

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