Jacobs Leads New York Congressional Members Call for Distribution of Rental Assistance Funds

April 6, 2021
Press Release

 

(Erie County, N.Y.) – Congressman Chris Jacobs (NY-27) led a letter with Congressmembers Claudia Tenney (NY-22), Andrew Garbarino (NY-02), Lee Zeldin (NY-01), and Nicole Malliotakis (NY-11) in calling on Governor Cuomo to release billions in rental assistance funding allocated to New York State by Congress in December.

“Tenants and landlords across New York State have suffered enormous economic hardship during the pandemic. Congress recognizes this reality, and it is why we allocated funds to assist New Yorkers in need. We are concerned that more than half of the money provided under the CARES Act remains unspent, while none of the $1.3 billion provided in December has been spent,” Reps. Jacobs, Tenney, Garbarino, Zeldin, and Malliotakis wrote. “Numerous other states have already distributed this funding. It is imperative these funds reach their intended recipients promptly.”

Specifically, the representatives are asking the Governor to provide a timetable for the creation of the application portal the state government said it would be using for distribution. The representatives are also asking that the Governor disclose if he intends to add additional eligibility requirements to receive the funding above what is required by the federal government.

New York received $1.3 billion in federal funding for residential rental assistance in the Consolidated Appropriations Act passed by Congress in December and will be receiving another $1.4 billion under the American Rescue Plan. In addition, $100 million was provided under the CARES Act.

Full text of the letter can be found here:

Dear Governor Cuomo,

We write to request information on New York State’s implementation of the Emergency Rental Assistance Program. As you know, New York received $1.3 billion in federal funding for residential rental assistance in the Consolidated Appropriations Act passed by Congress in December and will be receiving another $1.4 billion under the American Rescue Plan. In addition, $100 million was provided under the CARES Act. We are concerned that more than half of the money provided under the CARES Act remains unspent, while none of the $1.3 billion provided in December has been spent.

We respectfully request your reply within 14 days of receipt of this letter with answers to the following questions:

  • Your administration indicated it will be setting up a universal application portal for all applicants across the state. Is that portal ready? If not, when will it be?
  • Will the state be adding additional eligibility criteria to receive funds above what is set by federal law?

As you know, tenants and landlords across New York State have suffered enormous economic hardship during the pandemic. Congress recognizes this reality, and it is why we allocated funds to assist New Yorkers in need. Numerous other states have already distributed this funding. It is imperative these funds reach their intended recipients promptly. 

 

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PDF iconA PDF version of the letter can be found here