Berkeley County reopen federal assistance program for rent/utilities

Berkeley County News

BERKELEY COUNTY, S.C. (WCBD) – The federal emergency rental assistance program is available if you need help getting caught up on your rent and utilities. The program is part of the stimulus packages passed by Congress.

Berkeley County reopened their window to apply Monday but you can get assistance in every county in the state.

 “We did an initial application. A couple of months ago we had the application. Open for three weeks we received a little over 500 applications,” said Sandi Riddle, Berkeley County Grants Administrator

About 75 have now been paid out and about half of the applications still have additional paperwork that needs to be provided. 

“As of this morning Berkeley County reopened our emergency rental assistance program,” said Riddle.

Of the initial $6.89 million, the federal government sent Berkeley County.  About $5 million is still available. You must be renting, and behind on rent or utility payments because of the pandemic in some way. Homeowners are not eligible.

“That is something it was determined by treasury we get a lot of inquiry well I have a mortgage can you help me and I unfortunately we cannot it’s just not something the county is able to do with these funds,” said Riddle.

The federal government is also expected to make another $5 million available to the county soon. There is assistance available no matter where you live in the state.

“Our neighboring County in Charleston has a similar program they receive money directly as well and then the counties in the state that did not receive money directly are able to use the state program which is open right now state housing,” said Riddle.

The program can help you pay the back money you owe for rent and utilities, but it may even pay for your rent/utilities for the next three months as well. 

“The requirements are, in other words, anyone who is a renter in Berkeley County and they are behind on rent and utilities as a result of COVID-19 … they need to have an economic impact from COVID, they have their hours reduced, lost a job or some reason had reduced income has affected their ability to pay their rent and utilities,” Riddle explained.

Berkeley County opened its window for applications Monday.  They’re going to keep that window open indefinitely as long as there’s need.

Berkeley County’s program

Charleston County’s program

The state’s program

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