Glendale and Mesa receive millions in emergency rental assistance

Maricopa County just approved more than $9 million for Glendale and Mesa to help those behind on rent and who may be evicted.
Published: Oct. 20, 2022 at 8:18 PM MST
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MESA, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) — The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors announced Thursday they have voted to provide a total of nearly $9.2 million for the cities of Glendale and Mesa to go toward emergency rental assistance programs. The money lasts until the end of the year. Both Mesa and Glendale have already started using these millions to help qualified residents avoid being evicted. For both cities, the money came at the perfect time. “Mesa and Glendale have been out of money,” Mesa deputy director of community services Mary Brandon said.

Starting in 2020, during the pandemic, the federal government approved $52 million in federal aid for rental assistance in Mesa. But Brandon said that the city allotment is gone. Now? The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors has reallocated an additional five and a half million for the city to last through the year. “We know that the evictions and the homeless would be much greater if we had not received this assistance,” Brandon said.

In Mesa, the new funding will help around 500 households cover rent and any late fees for utilities. Individuals who make 50% or less of the area’s median income or who have previously received less than six months of aid get priority.

In Glendale, Community Action Program administrator Ismael Cantu says the nearly $4 million they’ll receive helps around 50 households a week. And Cantu says that number is continuing to grow. “We continue to see new families coming to us that have not been assisted in the past,” he said. “We have a substantial number of people that are waiting for assistance. We’re trying our best to get to those.”

But what happens for Glendale and Mesa homeowners in 2023? Cantu says he doesn’t expect inflation and other rising living costs in Glendale to change much by then. And Brandon says she’s already requested millions of dollars of additional federal rental assistance aid for Mesa next year.

For both cities, this rental assistance money, whether it’s from the U.S. Treasury or Maricopa County, is the difference between people keeping their homes or losing them. “The timing couldn’t have been better,” Cantu said. “It would have been very difficult to have a gap when we have clients that are needing our assistance on a daily basis.”

“Mesa’s very grateful for the opportunity that we had to assist those,” Brandon added. For any Maricopa County residents wondering if they’re eligible for rental assistance resources, you can visit the county’s community services section on their website.