NEW PORT RICHEY — Pasco County commissioners last week approved another round of federal grants to county residents struggling because of the COVID-19 pandemic, this time $1.57 million to assist with rent, mortgage payments and emergency home repairs.
Unlike previous programs, applications will only be awarded on a first come, first-completed application, first served basis, Marcy Esbjerg, community development director, told county commissioners.
The funds come from the federal Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security Act funneled through the Florida Housing Finance Corporation, the agency which assists Pasco in funding its program for affordable housing for low-to-moderate-income families. Applicants must be Pasco County residents who have been economically-impacted by COVID-19 who meet specific income requirements up to 120 percent of the county’s area median income, which is $59,160 for a single person.
Funds can be used for mortgage payments, emergency housing repair to a maximum of $10,000 or actual cost of roof or air conditioning repairs, housing re-entry assistance including security deposits, and utility deposits up to $5,000, foreclosure and eviction prevention and home ownership counseling. Mortgage or rent assistance cannot exceed nine months under the plan.
The application is available on-line at https://www.pascocountyfl.net/385/Community-Development or can be picked up at various locations around the county listed at that site including several government offices, libraries and recreational facilities. The funds must be spent by the end of this year and officials said that additional monies might be available this fall after the initial fund is used.