Forsyth County and the City of Winston-Salem are offering financial assistance to low-income residents who are behind with rent or utilities due to COVID-19 starting April 5.
The Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) offers assistance to pay rent and utility bills, including electricity, water and sewer, natural gas, propane and internet. Beginning April 5, residents can apply at Forsyth.cc/ERAP or by calling 1-855-838-6776.
The United States Department of Treasury established the ERAP to assist with housing and utility expenses in order to prevent evictions due to the pandemic. Forsyth County received $4,052,179 in ERAP funds and the City of Winston-Salem has received $7,478,359. The city and county are administering ERAP as a joint program.
"Forsyth County is pleased to partner with the City of Winston-Salem to deploy the Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP),” said Forsyth County Department of Social Services Director Victor Isler. “Collaboratively, we have intentionally developed a process that will allow renters and landlords to apply as efficiently as possible. Housing instability must be addressed to ensure we overcome the impact of this pandemic. ERAP is another intentional step in the right direction".
“The city is pleased to partner with Forsyth County to help many of our neighbors who are struggling with rent payments and payment of their utilities,” said City Community Development Director Marla Newman. “The availability of this money from the Treasury Department will go a long way to help people get back on their feet and be able to provide a safe, stable home for their family.”
The city is contracting with Tetra Tech to provide case management, eligibility determination services and dispute resolution. The city is also contracting with Benevate, Inc, dba Neighborly Software, to provide electronic application and data management services. The county will use contracted temporary workers through the The Resource Company, Inc., in addition to county staff, to provide application services, finalize assistance awards and distribute assistance.
To qualify for assistance, residents must:
Priority areas for assistance are households with an income of 50% or less of Area Median Income, households that have been unemployed for 90 days or more due to COVID-19 and households with a court eviction pending.
Required documentation to apply for the program include: