More home, rental and utility assistance available for some DeKalb residents

As the cost of living continues to rise across the nation, officials and organizations in DeKalb County are working together to provide assistance to those in need.

The following programs and organizations have recently been updated with additional funding, resources, and/or are accepting new applications:

DeKalb County’s Tenant-Landlord Assistance Coalition (TLAC) Program

At the end of June, DeKalb County’s Tenant-Landlord Assistance Coalition (TLAC) Program reopened to new applicants and those who previously applied but did not receive assistance. The TLAC program is being used to provide financial assistance to eligible households for the payment of rent, utilities, and other housing costs in arrears due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the TLAC website, adult tenants in eligible households as well as landlords, on behalf of tenants, may apply if they meet eligibility requirements, including a reduction in household income, incurrence of significant costs, financial hardship, or qualifying for unemployment benefits. Only renters and landlords are eligible for the TLAC program.

Those who are eligible may receive 12 months of back rent and three months of prospective rent and/or help with utilities. All of the funds go directly to landlords and utility companies, according to officials.

Although TLAC was suspended in November of 2021 due to depleted funds, DeKalb County CEO Michael Thurmond announced earlier this year that the county received $25 million from the Georgia Department of Community Affairs and the program would reopen.

To date, TLAC has distributed more than $30 million for rent and utilities to more than 3,500 DeKalb families, stated officials.

For more information, visit www.dekalbcountyga.gov/renthelp or call (404) 371-3201.

COVID-19 Emergency Housing Assistance Fund

Now through September 2022, residents in DeKalb County’s Super District 7, which includes parts of Doraville, Lithonia, Stone Mountain and Tucker, can apply for COVID-19 Emergency Housing Assistance Fund.

The program, a partnership between DeKalb County Human Services and District 7 Commissioner Lorraine Cochran Johnson, was created to assist DeKalb County residents living in District 7 who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and need access to emergency rent, mortgage and utility assistance funds.

Eligible DeKalb residents will receive assistance based upon documentation of need and subject to the availability of funds, stated officials.

To apply or to learn more about the program, visit www.dekalbcountyga.gov/human-development/housing-assistance. Questions about the program may be sent to program coordinator Annette VanDevere at avandevere@dekalbcountyga.gov.

Additional funds

Two local organizations, Decatur Cooperative Ministry and NAACP DeKalb, have received funding to help some DeKalb County residents with home, rental, and utility costs.

Earlier this year, DeKalb County Commissioner Mereda Davis Johnson allocated $200,000 to Decatur Cooperative Ministry and $100,000 to NAACP DeKalb. She announced through a press release that the organizations received the funds June 30.

Through this funding, NAACP DeKalb and Decatur Cooperative Ministry will be able to provide eviction forbearance and rental assistance, utility and water billing assistance, stated officials. Decatur Cooperative Ministry will also provide relocation assistance for individuals who have been displaced because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This critical partnership with the NAACP and Decatur Cooperative Ministry will help serve many of our residents who are still experiencing hardship because of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Davis Johnson.

To learn more about qualifications and how to apply, contact Decatur Cooperative Ministry at (404) 377-5365 and DeKalb County NAACP      at 404-241-8006.

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