The City of Knoxville’s new COVID-19 Housing Assistance Program will assist renters and homeowners struggling to pay for housing due to income lost because of the pandemic.
The goal of the program is to help an estimated 570 renter households and 140 homeowner households make their current and overdue housing payments.
“Many Knoxville residents have lost jobs and income due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Housing and Neighborhood Development Director Becky Wade. “Working with our community housing partners to quickly distribute these funds supports the City’s ongoing efforts to keep people in their homes and prevent homelessness.”
The City received approximately $1.55 million in funds as part of the CARES (Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security) Act from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). In addition to funding the Housing Assistance Program, the federal funds are also being designated for homeless emergency shelter services and Mobile Meals; City Council will vote on those allocations in a future meeting.
The additional funds came to the City as add-ons to annual federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG) funds received and allocated in the 2019-2020 budget. City Council voted to approve the additional expenditures with three community partner agencies at its June 2 meeting.
Program administrators encourage city residents who have lost employment or income due to COVID-19, or are unable to work because of being diagnosed and/or quarantined with COVID-19, to call 2-1-1 to ask about the Housing Assistance Program, as well as additional community resources available, including food and utilities assistance.
For additional information about the program, visit KnoxvilleTN.gov/COVID19.