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Snohomish sets up utility bill support
and rent relief program for city residents


SNOHOMISH — The City Council last week adopted an ordinance implementing a utility support and rent relief grant program for residents of Snohomish.
The council implemented this program to provide assistance to city residents financially affected by COVID-19. 
Utility grant recipients will receive a one-time, up-to-$500 grant per residential address. The payment can be either credited toward utility bills or sent to landlords if utilities are included in the rent. 
In order to receive the grant applicants must show they are in need of the support by providing documented proof.
To be eligible for the program, applicants must be unemployed, with proof documented by the Washington State Employment Security Department, or if the applicant meets the city’s definition of a low-income household, and a 2019 tax return must be presented as proof. The applicant may not be receiving financial assistance from any other programs in order to be eligible.
The program’s application was posted to the city’s website on Monday, Aug. 24: www.snohomishwa.gov/713/6421/COVID-19-Utility-Assistance
Applications can also be found at the Snohomish Community Food Bank, 1330 Ferguson Park Rd. Applications can be mailed to the City of Snohomish, P.O. Box 1589 Snohomish, WA 98291, or dropped off at the silver, metal Utility Drop Box along the sidewalk near City Hall at 116 Union Ave.
According to a city newsletter, applications will be accepted as long as funds are available but no later than Sept. 30, 2020.
If these options do not work for an applicant, an appointment can be set up through City Hall to complete the application.
The program is funded by the federal Coronavirus Aid and Economic Security (CARES) grant the city received in the spring. The city received a CARES grant of $306,000. The council has approved $100,000 to be distributed through the utility support and rent relief grant program.
Under the CARES Act, CARES funding can be used for economic support in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The city has used a portion of the funds for its direct non-budgeted operational needs, such as personal protection equipment (PPE), portable restrooms, and items needed to allow staff to work remotely” and the city also established a small business relief grant program, according to a city council meeting document.
For people who do not qualify for the grant program but are still struggling to pay utility bills because of COVID-19, call the city’s finance director at 360-282-3197 to request setting up a monthly payment plan with the city.

 

  

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