Miami-Dade Legislative Item
File Number: 201114
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File Number: 201114 File Type: Resolution Status: Amended
Version: 0 Reference: Control: County Commission
File Name: COVID-19 EMERGENCY RENTAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAM Introduced: 6/4/2020
Requester: Public Housing and Community Development Cost: Final Action: 7/8/2020
Agenda Date: 7/8/2020 Agenda Item Number: 8K2
Notes: See amended version under file no. 210125 Title: RESOLUTION DIRECTING THE COUNTY MAYOR OR THE COUNTY MAYOR’S DESIGNEE TO CREATE THE CORONAVIRUS DISEASE 2019 (COVID-19) EMERGENCY RENTAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAM (ERAP) FOR RENTAL ASSISTANCE GRANTS TO LOW- AND MODERATE INCOME PERSONS IN MIAMI-DADE COUNTY THAT HAVE LOST INCOME AS A RESULT OF THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC; ALLOCATING $10 MILLION OF FUNDS THAT THE COUNTY HAS RECEIVED PURSUANT TO THE 2020 CORONAVIRUS AID, RELIEF, AND ECONOMIC SECURITY ACT (CARES ACT) FOR THE ERAP; AND AUTHORIZING THE COUNTY MAYOR OR COUNTY MAYOR’S DESIGNEE TO EXECUTE SUCH DOCUMENTS NECESSARY TO CARRY OUT THE PURPOSES OF THE ERAP AND THIS RESOLUTION
Indexes: EMERGENCY RENTAL ASSISTANCE
Sponsors: Eileen Higgins, Co-Prime Sponsor
  Daniella Levine Cava, Co-Prime Sponsor
  Jose "Pepe" Diaz, Co-Sponsor
  Audrey M. Edmonson, Co-Sponsor
  Sally A. Heyman, Co-Sponsor
  Barbara J. Jordan, Co-Sponsor
  Jean Monestime, Co-Sponsor
  Dennis C. Moss, Co-Sponsor
Sunset Provision: No Effective Date: Expiration Date:
Registered Lobbyist: None Listed


Legislative History

Acting Body Date Agenda Item Action Sent To Due Date Returned Pass/Fail

Board of County Commissioners 7/8/2020 8K2 Amended
REPORT: Commissioner Bovo offered, and Commissioner Higgins accepted, a proposed amendment to the foregoing resolution. Assistant County Attorney Shannon Summerset Williams advised the following sentence would be added at the end of Section 3 on page 7:, “no general fund revenue shall be used to fund the ERAP.” On Thursday, July 9, 2020, it was moved by Commissioner Higgins that the foregoing proposed resolution be adopted with the amendment read into the record by Assistant County Attorney Summerset Williams. This motion was seconded by Commissioner Heyman, and upon being put to a vote, passed by a vote of 10-0 (Commissioners Levine Cava, Moss and Suarez were absent). The amended version of this Resolution has been assigned Resolution No. R-642-20.

Board of County Commissioners 6/16/2020 14A5 4 Day Rule Invoked
REPORT: Commissioner Monestime referenced the lengthy discussion by the Board earlier in today’s meeting regarding Agenda Items 6B2 and 11A4 and asked if the foregoing item could be amended to include mortgage relief assistance. He also requested he be added as a co-sponsor in the event the item could be amended to include mortgage relief assistance. Assistant County Attorney Shannon Summerset-Williams indicated there was no legal issue in extending the program to include mortgage relief assistance. Responding to Commissioner Monestime’s question whether the $10 million currently allocated would be enough and if there were any other funds available to allocate to the program. Deputy Mayor Moon indicated more money could be allocated to expand the program to help residential and business tenants, as well as provide rental and mortgage relief to the community and offered to return with a report on a proposed expansion. Chairwoman Edmonson reminded her colleague, Commissioner Monestime, that a request was made earlier in today’s (6/16) meeting during discussion of Agenda Item 6B2, for the County Attorney’s Office to draft legislation urging the State/Federal government to provide CARES Act funding to assist rental property owners and landlords. Commissioner Levine Cava requested she be added as a co-prime sponsor on the foregoing item. Commissioner Higgins reviewed the intent of the foregoing item and explained how the program would be administered. She spoke about the “trickle up” effect of unpaid rent and the financial impact on landlords and expressed her disappointment that the program would be delayed based on Commissioner Bovo’s intent to invoke the 4-Day Rule. Commissioner Bovo invoked the 4-Day Rule.

Office of the Chairperson 6/12/2020 Additions

Office of Agenda Coordination 6/9/2020 Assigned County Attorney 6/9/2020
REPORT: revised memo and resolution

County Attorney 6/9/2020 Assigned Office of Agenda Coordination 6/9/2020
REPORT: Item returned to Dept. with edits.

County Attorney 6/8/2020 Assigned Shannon D. Summerset 6/9/2020

Office of Agenda Coordination 6/8/2020 Assigned County Attorney 6/8/2020
REPORT: revised memo and resolution

County Attorney 6/5/2020 Assigned Office of Agenda Coordination 6/5/2020
REPORT: item reutnred to Dept . With edits

County Attorney 6/5/2020 Assigned Shannon D. Summerset 6/5/2020

County Attorney 6/5/2020 Assigned Office of Agenda Coordination 6/5/2020
REPORT: item retunred to Dept. with edits

County Attorney 6/4/2020 Assigned Shannon D. Summerset

Office of Agenda Coordination 6/4/2020 Assigned County Attorney 7/8/2020
REPORT: PHCD - Shannon D. Summerset-Williams - Commr. Higgins Sponsor - pending June cmte - Attachments: none - item has 7 pages - Note: Late Memo attached

Maurice Kemp 6/4/2020 Assigned Office of Agenda Coordination

Legislative Text


TITLE
RESOLUTION DIRECTING THE COUNTY MAYOR OR THE COUNTY MAYOR’S DESIGNEE TO CREATE THE CORONAVIRUS DISEASE (COVID-19) EMERGENCY RENTAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAM (ERAP) FOR RENTAL ASSISTANCE GRANTS TO LOW AND MODERATE INCOME PERSONS IN MIAMI-DADE COUNTY THAT HAVE LOST INCOME AS A RESULT OF THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC; ALLOCATING $10 MILLION OF FUNDS THAT THE COUNTY HAS RECEIVED PURSUANT TO THE 2020 CORONAVIRUS AID, RELIEF, AND ECONOMIC SECURITY ACT (CARES ACT) FOR THE ERAP, AND AUTHORIZING THE COUNTY MAYOR OR COUNTY MAYOR’S DESIGNEE TO EXECUTE SUCH DOCUMENTS NECESSARY TO CARRY OUT THE PURPOSES OF THE ERAP AND THIS RESOLUTION

BODY
WHEREAS, this Board desires to accomplish the purposes outlined in the accompanying memorandum, a copy of which is incorporated herein by reference,

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, FLORIDA, that:

Section 1. The foregoing recital is incorporated in this resolution and is approved.

Section 2. This Board directs the County Mayor or the County Mayor’s designee to create the COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP), as described in the attached memorandum, for rental assistance grants to low and moderate income persons in Miami-Dade County that have lost income as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Section 3. This Board allocates $10 million of funds that the County has received pursuant to the 2020 Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) for the ERAP, to be allocated equally among the thirteen Miami-Dade County Commission Districts. No less than 25 percent of the funds shall be set aside for and allocated to families making 40 percent or less of Area Median Income. No General Fund revenues shall be used to fund the ERAP.
Section 4. This Board further authorizes the County Mayor or the County Mayor’s designee to execute any documents necessary to carry out the purposes of the ERAP and this resolution, following approval by the County Attorney’s Office for form and legal sufficiency.

HEADER
Date: To: Honorable Chairwoman Audrey M. Edmonson
and Members, Board of County Commissioners From: Carlos A. Gimenez
Mayor
Subject: Resolution Approving the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) for Miami-Dade
County from Funds Derived from the 2020 Coronavirus Aid,
Relief, and Economic Security (CARES Act)

STAFF RECOMMENDATION
Recommendation
It is recommended that the Board of County Commissioners (Board) authorize the County Mayor or the County Mayor’s designee to develop and implement a Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) that will assist eligible residents of Miami-Dade County that; 1) earn no more than 80 percent of the County median income according to the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (U.S. HUD); 2) have a current written lease signed by their landlord; 3) not be a recipient of other rental assistance programs; and 4) have documentation showing that the household’s income has suffered during the period of the COVID-19 pandemic. It is further recommended that the Board allocate $10 million of funds that the County has received pursuant to the 2020 Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) for the ERAP, to be allocated equally among the 13 Miami-Dade County Commission Districts. Finally, it is recommended that the Board authorize the County Mayor or County Mayor’s designee to execute any documents necessary, subject to the County Attorney Office’s approval, to carry out the purposes set forth herein.

Scope
The scope of the ERAP is countywide and provides a one-time rental assistance for eligible residents who meet the criteria.

Fiscal Impact/Funding Source
The ERAP is federally-funded through Section 5001 of the CARES Act, signed into law on March 27, 2020, and which established the Coronavirus Relief Fund (CRF) as part of Section 601(d) of the Social Security Act. Miami-Dade County, as a unit of local government, is eligible for an allocation from the CRF which is designed to provide financial resources to address expenditures incurred to respond directly to the emergency as well as to second-order effects of the emergency, such as payment of overdue rent caused by income loss due to disruptions in business attributable to COVID-19.

The amount budgeted for ERAP is approximately $10 million, and will be allocated equally among the thirteen Miami-Dade County Commission Districts.

Track Record/Monitor
The ERAP will be monitored by Michael Liu, Director, Public Housing and Community Development (PHCD).

Background
Community transmission of the novel coronavirus in the United States began in early February 2020 and perhaps earlier; and amid growing local anticipated impacts, the Governor of the State of Florida issued Executive Order No. 20-51 on March 1, 2020, directing the Florida Department of Health to issue a public health emergency. Thereafter, on March 11, 2020, the County Mayor issued a State of Local Emergency.

The CRF requires that only costs incurred from March 1, 2020 through December 30, 2020 may be covered.

Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, Miami-Dade County was designated as one of the most cost burdened jurisdictions for housing in the United States. Well over 50 percent of households in Miami-Dade County must pay 30 percent or more of their incomes for housing. There have been estimates that over 100,000 affordable housing units would have to be built over the next 8 years to address the demand.

With thousands of businesses having been closed to address the need to mitigate transmission of the virus, tens of thousands of families have experienced income loss due to layoffs, firings, and reduced work hours. Unemployment claims are the highest in the United States since 1945, with over 36 million people having filed for assistance as of the middle of May 2020. Miami-Dade County has been particularly vulnerable to the need to close businesses and restrict travel due to its heavy reliance on the hospitality and visitor industries. This crisis has only exacerbated our affordable housing challenge, and provides the basis for the ERAP.

Eligibility and Assistance Provided
Eligible for the ERAP, are residents of Miami-Dade County who earn no more that 80 percent of County area median income (AMI) according to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD); currently have a lease; not a participant in other rental assistance programs; and have documentation showing that the household's income has suffered during the period of the COVID-19 pandemic (e.g., paystubs, unemployment notice, notice of rent past due, etc.).

The assistance provided will depend on bedroom size and household income. Rental assistance will be calculated based on the lesser of the rent allowed by HUD for the bedroom size of the unit or the actual monthly rent, reduced by 30 percent of the household’s current monthly gross income.

A sampling of AMI according to HUD are as follows: 80 percent of AMI for households of up to 4 persons: (one person) $51,200.00; (two persons) $58,560.00; (three persons) $65,840.00; (four persons) $73,120.00.
HUD rent payment levels are as follows: Studio-$1,280.00; 1 BR-$1,372.00; 2 BR-$1-646.00; 3 BR-$1,902.00; 4 BR-$2,122.00; 5 BR-$2,341.00

How Assistance is Calculated
Example: Family size of four
* The head-of-household is laid-off due to employer downsizing as a result of limited business caused by the COVID-19 crisis. The family is renting a three-bedroom apartment and the current monthly family income is now $2,083.00.
* Based on the 80 percent of AMI for a family of 4, the eligible monthly maximum income is $6,093.00 ($73,120.00 12 = $6,093.00). This family meets the income requirement. The current monthly rent for this family is $1,600.00 per month. Calculation of assistance Gross monthly income: $2,083.00 (a) Actual Rent: $1,600.00 (b) Maximum allowable rent for a 3-BR per HUD: $1,902.00 The lesser of (a) and (b): $1,600.00 Less 30% of gross monthly income (=.30 x $2,083.00):
$625.00 Rental Assistance: $975.00
Application Process
PHCD will accept applications through a dedicated secure website utilizing Emphasys software. This is the software platform that PHCD currently uses for its federally-subsidized housing programs. Additionally, there will also be a dedicated phone number for those who need assistance due to special circumstances and capacity to accept applications manually.

The online application will ask and collect documentation verifying the applicant’s identity; household income; the applicant’s lease; inability to pay the full rent due to loss of income as a result of COVID-19 impacts; is not receiving any other government housing assistance; and contact information of the landlord.

The acceptance of applications will only be open for a four-day period. Applications will be reviewed for completeness, segregated by commission district, and using a computerized random selection process, applications will be assigned numbers that will determine the order of final review for approval by district.

Other application details will be announced at a later time.

Summary
The County is committed to helping families with limited resources to make payments for overdue rent.


__________________
Maurice L. Kemp
Deputy Mayor






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