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Qualifications for newest round of Federal rental assistance

Posted at 10:17 PM, Mar 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-16 01:17:04-04

TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — "We are getting close to eviction, there was about a 10 day notice that we had."

Desperate families, turning to activism to call on extended help.

"Once that's over then we're out on the streets basically."

Rent moratoriums end with the month of March.

That could leave hundreds, even thousands of families evicted and without a place to live.

"I have two beautiful daughters you know, and just to look at their faces and to worry about where we're going to be or where we're going to end up, it's just very terrifying."

Victor Preciado had one place to bring his family on Monday, downtown Tucson, where activists and other families facing homelessness came together.

Their hope is that local politicians will hear their voice pleading for an extension of rent protections in Pima County.

"I had a job last year where it's paying most of my bills," Preciado said.

"Everything was relying on that job and the wage loss happened and there was just cuts to the job and I was, unfortunately, cut from the job."

He said he and his wife are working to bring in any income they can.

"It's part-time but it's something to help pay bills."

In several memos, County Administrator Chuck Huckleberry said the county is expecting about $25 million in the latest round of Federal funds for rent and utility assistance.

He said the rules to apply are much stricter than before.

Among the qualifications:

- households that qualified for unemployment benefits
- experienced a reduced income
- an evident risk of homelessness
- income below 80% of the area median.

Huckelberry went on to say the latest round of funding would pay for up to 15 months of rent.

That would be a huge help to Preciado and his family.

"We have to either pack up or go in the car or find a family member that'll take us in because we really wouldn't have anywhere else to go within 10 days."

The County Board of Supervisors are expected to discuss rent protections at their regular meeting on Tuesday.