Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente says COVID-19 emergency rental assistance funding is ready to be distributed.

The U.S. Department of the Treasury established an Emergency Rental Assistance Program in January, under which New York State, and counties and cities with populations of at least 200,000, were eligible upon application to request funding

Oneida County applied for and was awarded $6.7 million in funding.

The county is now working with the State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance to disperse the funding.

“The carnage the COVID-19 pandemic has unleashed within our rental community has brought ire to renters and landlords alike,” Picente said. “Our offices have been inundated with calls and emails from tenants struggling to pay their rent and landlords looking for reimbursement for months of lost income. I am pleased that this federal funding is finally available to those who so desperately need it. Oneida County will do all it can to help our residents find relief as they navigate the state’s distribution process.”

Applications are being accepted for all renters who are at or below 80 percent of the area median income and meet other eligibility factors.

Eligible households may receive up to 12 months of rental and/or utility assistance.

The payments will go directly to the property owner.

An online application process which went live on June 1 can be accessed at https://nysrenthelp.otda.ny.gov.

Oneida County has also established an email address at RentalAssistance@ocgov.net and helpline at (315) 798-5439 to answer questions and provide direction.

A state helpline is also available to provide assistance with application and eligibility questions at 1-844-691-7368.

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