Released: August 29, 2022
The Delaware County Emergency Rental Assistance Program (DelCo ERA) is approaching 100% expenditure of its allocation of $78,397,830 in ERA 1 and 2 funds and is on track to fund 11,500 grants to low-income renters experiencing housing instability. Based on the current rate of processing applications, the program will wind down at the end of September.
The application window for DelCo ERA will close on Saturday, September 10 at 4:00 p.m. and DelCo ERA will no longer accept new or subsequent assistance registrations after that date. Grant applications received before September 10 will continue to be processed with remaining funds available.
DelCo ERA has helped thousands of tenants and their landlords in the Delaware County community since it was launched in April 2021, as part of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, with a mandate to help low-income Delaware County residents stay in their rental homes.
“I really appreciate receiving the DelCo ERA grant. Things have gotten so bad since the pandemic and now with inflation, gas, food, and utilities costs rising higher and higher- this is much-needed help for so many,” said Marilyn Bowles, DelCO ERA grant awardee.
In October 2021, DelCo ERA expended 100% of its first allocation of $37.27 million in ERA 1 funds, when the national average expenditure rate was just 45%. In 2022, the U.S. Treasury and Commonwealth of Pennsylvania awarded DelCo ERA an additional $10.73 million based on the urgent need to address housing instability among low-income renters and the robust capacity of the DelCo ERA production system. Grants continue to be provided.
As of August 21, the program has processed 11,196 grants
The average grant is $6,000 for 9.75 months of rent and utility assistance
2,085 grants have helped households avoid a court-ordered eviction
Average annual household income is $23,128
9,724 of all grants (82.8%) benefitted households earning 50% or less of Area Median Income
5,955 of all grants (53.2%) benefitted households earning 30% or less of AMI
6,082 of all grants helped households with children remain in their homes
DelCo ERA represents an extraordinary partnership among Delaware County Government and various partners.
“The pandemic taught us how to be more responsive to residents in need and we were able to deliver rental assistance services at a vastly larger scale than ever before,” said Delaware County Council Chair Dr. Monica Taylor. “Delaware County could not have achieved this success without the thoughtful and persistent collaboration of community partners, the eviction court system, constituent service staff of elected officials, utilities, landlords and tenants along with our program manager, Capital Access.”
The County celebrates the accomplishments of DelCo ERA as the programs comes to a close. The U.S. Treasury and Commonwealth of Pennsylvania established the program to assist low-income renters during the Covid-19 emergency. The funds also helped the applicants’ landlords and utility companies, large and small, through the devastating effects of the pandemic.
“Many low-income renters got hit hard during the pandemic and their recovery has been extremely challenging,” said Delaware County Councilman Kevin Madden. “Council is grateful for the support of U. S. Treasury and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for their financial support. We also commend the DelCo ERA production team and the tenants and landlords who applied for their participation. Together, we are further along the road to economic recovery.”
DelCo ERA launched in April 2021, with an allocation of $37 million in ERA 1 funds and a plan to complete production in six months. The Treasury and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania then allocated twice as much funding for ERA 2 because of the persistent need and the robust capacity of the DelCo ERA delivery system. After 18 months of service to Delaware County residents in need, DelCo ERA is now winding down as it approaches 100% expenditure of currently available funds. Delaware County is exploring options for possible additional funding.
“The housing stability needs of low-income renters continue, but it is important for us to take a moment and appreciate how we all helped generate over 11,500 grants to alleviate the stresses of housing instability for low-income renters, said Delaware County Council Vice Chair Elaine Paul Schaefer. “On behalf of my colleagues on Council and the DelCo ERA Management Team, we sincerely appreciate everyone’s contributions to making DelCo ERA a massive success.”
Residents can contact the DELCO ERA program for assistance by phone at (484) 729-4200 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org