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Northampton County to End Emergency Rental Assistance Program | WDIY Local News

Ivan Samkov

Northampton County has announced that a rental relief program founded during the COVID-19 pandemic is coming to an end.

Northampton County said that the Emergency Rental Assistance Program will cease, due to the end of the COVID-19 national emergency declaration.

According to a county release, the last day to submit ERAP applications is Monday, May 15.

In total, Northampton County has distributed over $27 million to renters and landlords, and processed over 10,000 rental, hotel, and utility assistance applications.

The program was established by the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, which was signed into law by former Gov. Tom Wolf.

ERAP money was distributed in Northampton County through the Community Mediation and Eviction Diversion program, which was established under County Executive Lamont McClure’s administration.

The ERAP program was created to offer rental and utility assistance to eligible households, and also included assistance with other housing expenses and the provision of housing stability services.

The release said Northampton County hired tenant navigators to complete networking within the courts and work to connect tenants to social services through various partnerships. It also said the county has been cited on the Federal Treasury website for its use of the ERAP.

“Northampton County supports strong and equitable services for our residents,” McClure said in a statement.

“Our Department of Human Services and Department of Community and Economic Development worked together to avert a myriad of evictions through rent and utility assistance throughout the COVID-19 Pandemic.”

Northampton County said its Department of Community and Economic Development administers homelessness prevention and rapid rehousing resources through Catholic Charities, Diocese of Allentown, which can be reached at 610-435-1541.

Emergency Shelter Services information and referrals for shelter are also available by calling 211.

The federal COVID-19 public health emergency declaration will come to an end on May 11. The World Health Organization also ended its global health emergency declaration on May 5.

(Original air-date: 5/8/23)

Sarit "Siri" Laschinsky was WDIY's News and Public Affairs Director until 2023.