skip to main content
skip to newscasts

Monday, June 24, 2024

Public News Service Logo
facebook instagram linkedin reddit youtube twitter
view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

America's 'Radical Elders' continue their work for fairness, justice; SCOTUS upholds law disarming domestic abusers; Workplace adoption benefits help families, communities; Report examines barriers to successful post-prison re-entry in NC.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

A congresswoman celebrates Biden protections for mixed status families, Louisiana's Ten Commandments law faces an inevitable legal challenge, and a senator moves to repeal the strict 19th century anti-obscenity and anti-abortion Comstock Act.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

A Minnesota town claims the oldest rural Pride Festival while rural educators say they need support to teach kids social issues, rural businesses can suffer when dollar stores come to town and prairie states like South Dakota are getting help to protect grasslands.

Rental Assistance Stunted by Connection Gap in ND

play audio
Play

Tuesday, July 13, 2021   

BISMARCK, N.D. -- A federal eviction moratorium ends July 31, but states like North Dakota are still flush with emergency rental assistance tied to federal relief packages.

Aid groups and the state are ramping up efforts to reach anyone who might be having access issues.

This year alone, North Dakota has received $352 million from the federal government to distribute to people behind on their rent. But so far, a little more than $3 million has been used.

Rich LeMay, executive director for Legal Services of North Dakota, said there appears to be a disconnect in reaching some populations.

"We're finding people that are contacting us, haven't heard anything about rent help," LeMay explained. "To me, that speaks that there is a serious problem."

He noted lack of internet connections, email addresses or cell-phone minutes are likely factors.

The Department of Human Services cites having to wait for the Legislature to sign off on spending the aid. It's working with local agencies to set up application counseling services.

The Center for Public Integrity has reported that nationwide, a significant portion of CARES Act money last year didn't make it to renters or landlords in need.

Nikki Aden, housing stability administrator for the North Dakota Department of Human Services, said multiple factors are to blame for the federal funding still going largely unused, but agreed underserved areas face barriers in the application process.

"Folks that did struggle sometimes with getting assistance to upload documents, or turn documents to PDFs or pictures," Aden observed.

In addition to providing specialized counseling in the coming weeks, Aden pointed out they also plan to streamline the web portal to apply for aid.

With the federal eviction moratorium fast approaching, LeMay would like to see a greater sense of urgency.

"This needs to really be put in full swing if we're going to actually avoid people being evicted," LeMay urged.

He added Legal Services is devoting the bulk of its resources to connecting people with assistance or help with applications. In the past year, it has seen a 15% increase in requests for help with housing issues.

Disclosure: Legal Services of North Dakota contributes to our fund for reporting on Health Issues, Livable Wages/Working Families, Native American Issues, and Senior Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
more stories
The 2024 Summer U.S. Conference of Mayors in Kansas City, Mo., will be under the leadership of its president, Mayor Hillary Schieve of Reno, Nev., and host Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas.
(SeanPavonePhoto/Adobe Stock)

play sound

Some Michigan mayors are out of the office this week - but still working for their cities. They're at the 92nd meeting of the United States …


Social Issues

play sound

Summer is here, but some Wisconsin households juggling higher consumer costs and other basic needs might feel like a vacation is out of reach…

Social Issues

play sound

An interim North Dakota legislative committee this week got an update from state leaders on potential moves to reconnect kids in foster care with thei…


Social Issues

play sound

More employers are offering benefits to adoptive parents, according to a new survey by the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption. The amount of paid …

About a quarter of Americans hold unfavorable views of both former President Donald Trump and President Joe Biden. (Christian Delbert/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

play sound

The Arizona Court of Appeals recently dismissed a case brought by Republican Arizona attorney general candidate Abraham Hamadeh, Republican Cochise …

Social Issues

play sound

North Carolina's business community is alarmed after Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson praised the controversial House Bill 2, known as the "Bathroom Bill," at …

Social Issues

play sound

Members of the group Radical Elders are participating in a Chicago tech conference this weekend to explain the impact of technology on older Americans…

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021