Governor Larry Hogan announced an open enrollment for the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development’s (DHCD) Assisted Housing Relief Program, which will provide a four-month rent rebate voucher for renters living in DHCD-financed properties who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“One of the first actions I took in response to this unprecedented crisis was prohibiting the eviction of tenants affected by the pandemic during the state of emergency,” said Governor Hogan.
“Our administration will continue to do everything we can to help Marylanders weather this storm, get back on their feet, and recover.”
The Assisted Housing Relief Program is intended to help bring rental delinquencies current and provide real relief for tenants through direct payments to their eligible property management company.
Tenants in eligible properties will be credited a four-month rent rebate paid directly to the property management company, which will eliminate their rental debt and the threat of eviction.
The program will include rental units in multifamily projects financed by DHCD’s Community Development Administration using state funds or federal resources, such as the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit program, where the unit rent is controlled.
Eligible applicants will be tenants who can certify that the cause of their rent delinquency is COVID-19 related and will be collected and consolidated by property managers and submitted to DHCD.
In addition to the Assisted Housing Relief Program, DHCD is deploying federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding across all 24 local jurisdictions in Maryland to prevent evictions.
The first round of program funding is currently being deployed to local jurisdictions, which will administer the funds to local residents. Landlords and tenants should contact their local jurisdiction for more information, or email DHCD customer service at email@example.com.
Prohibition on Evictions During State of Emergency.
On March 16, Governor Hogan issued an emergency order that prohibits Maryland courts from ordering the eviction of any tenant who can demonstrate that their inability to pay rent was the result of COVID-19—for example, because of lost or reduced employment, or needing to care for a school-aged child—or because they are diagnosed with, or under investigation for, COVID-19. The order remains in place during the state of emergency. The District Court of Maryland has delayed any hearings on failure to pay rent cases until August 31.