Fulton planning how to distribute $18M in rental assistance

Fulton County is planning how it will distribute $18 million of federal rental assistance throughout the county. (Melissa Golden/The New York Times)
Fulton County is planning how it will distribute $18 million of federal rental assistance throughout the county. (Melissa Golden/The New York Times)

Credit: NYT

Credit: NYT

Fulton County is currently putting together its plan of how to distribute the $18 million is received from the federal government to help renters stay in their homes.

Fulton, the city of Atlanta and other metro counties got the money as part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act passed a couple months ago to help those facing eviction because their budgets were disrupted by COVID-19.

Fulton’s county manager Dick Anderson said his staff plan to roll out the rental assistance program to the public on March 1. DeKalb County CEO Michael Thurmond announced Tuesday that his county will open its $21 million pot of grants to renters at 9 a.m. Friday.

ExploreDeKalb announces $21M program to help prevent evictions

Anderson said Tuesday that Fulton is close to selecting a vendor to help run the program but still must create a call center. Anderson said his staff is researching how many eligible residents there are and trying to predict demand. The money can go toward rent and utilities.

When presented with the plan at their Wednesday meeting, some Fulton commissioners said their offices have already received inquiries about how to get the money.

Commissioners from all parts of the county encouraged Fulton to get the program up and running quickly.

“We’re all still getting our paychecks,” said Commissioner Liz Hausmann, who represents part of North Fulton. “It’s hard to relate to situations that folks are in, and there’s a lot of desperation out there.”

ExploreFulton mayors agree on new T-SPLOST, differ on Bus Rapid Transit

An added layer of complication in Fulton is that Atlanta will have its own process/allotment because of the size of its population.

Commissioner Natalie Hall, whose district is almost entirely the city of Atlanta, encouraged the county to work with Fulton’s largest city to ensure a seamless online process for Atlanta residents who come to the county for help not realizing they need to go to their city.

“The residents don’t care about jurisdictions,” Hall said, adding that they just want results.

Fulton commissioners and mayors will discuss the rental assistance program during a Friday meeting. Those meetings are typically livestreamed on the county’s YouTube page: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCYH7E0jH6HxE-3KTRluH8SQ.

Democrats ProposePlan to Provide EveryChild With a $1,000Savings Account.On Thursday, Democrats reintroduced legislationthat would provide every child with an interest-accruingfund managed by the Treasury Department.The plan is spearheaded by Senator Cory Bookerand Representative Ayanna Pressley.It was cosponsored by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumerand Senators Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders and Dick Durbin. .According to their legislation, each child would receive an “American Opportunity Account”at birth, seeded with $1,000. .From then on, each year the child would receive between$0 and $2,000, depending on family income. .At age 18, the recipient could access their accountand utilize the funds for “wealth-building activities.” .These activities include higher education,homeownership and entrepreneurship. .According to Booker, “Baby Bonds” representsa “once-in-a-generation” chance to “close the racialwealth gap” and “unleash economic opportunity.”.When it comes to racial justice,we cannot afford to wait. As we emergefrom this dark period of our nation’shistory, Baby Bonds is exactly thetype of universal, race consciousprogram necessary to build oureconomy back better, Cory Booker, via 'Business Insider'.The legislation also noted that the cost of“Baby Bonds” would be about $60 billion annually.Booker previously argued that hiking estate taxes and closingtax breaks for the wealthy could easily offset the cost.In a country as wealthy as ours,every person should have access toeconomic opportunity and the chanceto build assets and create wealth, Cory Booker, via 'Business Insider'

In Other News