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Arkansas Rent Relief Program funds going out, but slowly

Over $1 million distributed so far
Published: Jul. 21, 2021 at 5:48 PM CDT
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JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - It’s been a few months since the information about a new Rent Relief Program in the state began to be released.

$173 million was awarded to the Arkansas Department of Human Services earlier this year.

The money went toward the program to help renters and landlords, but it’s taking a while for people to receive funds.

A couple of Jonesboro landlords said the process has been long, with one saying that is expected with a new program.

“I will tell you it is a very frustrating process, but COVID is very frustrating and it is affecting everyone,” said Felicia Johnson, owner of New Door Real Estate in May.

She said 10 of her renters have applied for the money, but only one has received their payment.

“It took a year to roll out this program,” said Johnson. “Now that the money is available, there is a brand new process that everybody even the workers at the state of Arkansas are having to go through.”

DHS has 799 tenant applications and 639 landlord applications so far.

All of those are not approved yet, but a little over $1 million has been issued.

DHS leaders said the biggest hold-up is that renters and landlords are both not applying.

“It may take more than a couple of days to get approved because you have several applying, the documentation has to match up and just bear with us. Bear with the application process,” said Lorie Williams, Assistant Director of Community Service at DHS.

They want to give the money out. It just may take a few weeks.

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