Governor Walz is soliciting input to inform his request to lawmakers on how to spend $1.2 billion in federal American Rescue Plan (ARP) funds. The Governor’s office has requested people submit requests for the ARP funds through this MMB portal by Thursday, September 30th. This $1.2 billion is in addition to $500 million that the Governor has and can spend at his discretion.
MHP is following the recommendations of the Homes for All Coalition, which includes $50M for supportive services and shelter, $300M for preservation, $55M for housing partners and support, $200M for new development, and $20M for emergency rental assistance related activities.
We encourage advocates to take a moment to fill out the survey. Feel free to copy and paste the below text into questions 4, 5 and 6.
Public health; disadvantaged communities; renter and homeowner assistance
Supportive Services & shelter support- $50 million
- Funding for shelter and supportive housing programs to ensure people experiencing or at-risk of experiencing homelessness have access to shelters, transitional housing, supportive services and COVID mitigation and prevention.
- Uses include: Emergency Services Program COVID-19 aid; technical assistance to implement Housing Stabilization Services; and more
Preservation & Anti-Displacement- $300 million
- Funding to preserve, acquire and rehab affordable multi- and single-family housing. Preservation and rehab programs can mitigate the home health risks that disproportionately impact renters and homeowners with low incomes, such as mold and mildew, asbestos, and radon and lead positioning.
- Uses include: Public housing rehab; Naturally Occurring Affordable Housing (NOAH) preservation and acquisition; homeowner rehab; lead remediation; manufactured housing rehab, replacement and infrastructure
Housing partners and local support- $55 million
- Capacity and financial support for local partners who have been working to distribute COVID 19 housing assistance and prevent evictions and foreclosures
- Uses include: housing partner and provider capacity funds; tenant eviction defense (legal advice, legal services, and representation in court); homeowner counseling and foreclosure prevention; local housing trust fund match
New development- $200 million
- Uses include: shelter capital; homeownership opportunities; lowest income rental housing; supportive housing
Emergency COVID-19 Housing Assistance- $20 million
- Support the roll-out of both RentHelpMN and HomeHelpMN to prevent evictions and foreclosures
- Uses include: additional funding for field partners; technical assistance dollars; eviction prevention dollars; additional dollars for COVID rental and homeowner assistance
Minnesota faced a housing crisis before the pandemic, but COVID-19 has exacerbated this crisis. Unsafe housing often means exposure to lead, asbestos-contaminated vermiculite, and mold, all which can cause health issues and are serious COVID- 19 comorbidities. For people experiencing homelessness or who are unhoused, the risk and spread of COVID-19 may be more likely if shelter and services are provided in congregate settings with limited isolation or quarantine space and due to lack of access to health care. Lack of access to safe, stable, and affordable housing disproportionally impacts communities of color, heightening COVID-19 and public health inequities, while access to safe, affordable and stable housing is an essential public health intervention to mitigate the spread and risk of COVID-19. Use of the ARPA funds for housing across the continuum is called out as an eligible use throughout the Department of Treasury Interim Final Rule from May 10, 2021.