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Date: Oct 1, 2020

Second Phase Builds on County’s Efforts to Improve Housing Stability

In the latest step to support housing stability amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski today announced, under the second phase of the County’s eviction prevention program, that the County will provide up to $2 million in rental assistance for residents who have lost income as a result of the pandemic and are at risk of losing their housing.

The County will begin accepting applications on October 6.

“We have to do all we can to help families across Baltimore County who are struggling as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and ensuring that our neighbors can keep their housing is a critical part of that process,” Olszewski said. “I’m proud of the work we have already done to prevent evictions and I’m thankful to all our community partners for their support as we begin the next step in these efforts.”

During the first phase of the Eviction Prevention Program, the County distributed over $1.2 million in rental assistance to almost 500 households. Funding came from the County’s allocation of federal Coronavirus Relief Funds and Emergency Assistance to Families with Children through the Department of Social Services.

Partner Organizations

The County has partnered with community-based organizations to administer phase two of the program, which is funded by Community Development Block Grant–Coronavirus (CDBG-CV) funds.

Following an RFP announced in July, the County will enter into grant agreements with seven organizations:

  • Associated Catholic Charities
  • Baltimore County Department of Social Services
  • Community Assistance Network—Six of the seven grants were approved during the County’s 14-day grant notification process. Funding for the Community Assistance Network is subject to County Council approval during its October 5 legislative session.
  • Episcopal Housing Corporation
  • House of Ruth
  • Jewish Community Services
  • St. Vincent de Paul

How to Apply

Applicants should apply through Baltimore County’s application portal and will be contacted directly by one of the County’s approved partner organizations listed above to complete application processing and eligibility review. Completed applications will be reviewed on a first-come, first-served basis and are subject to available funding.

In order to qualify for assistance through this programs, applicants must be:

  • A Baltimore County resident with a valid lease agreement.
  • At risk of losing rental housing due to COVID-19 income loss.
  • At or below 80 percent of the Area Median Income.
  • Household cannot have received an eviction order prior to March 16, 2020.

Other Resources

Residents who have already received an eviction notice and/or have a court date can contact the District Court Self-Help Resource Centers, which provide free limited legal services for individuals who are not represented by an attorney in civil cases. The Centers can be reached on weekdays from 8:30 a.m. until 8 p.m. by calling 410-260-1392 or through an online chat.

In addition to providing financial support to residents, the County has partnered with the Maryland Consumer Rights Coalition's Fair Housing Action Center to provide financial coaching and counseling, including assistance negotiating with landlords; referral to supportive services, including legal assistance; and renters’ tax credit applications and assistance.

The eviction prevention initiative is a key part of Baltimore County’s efforts to strengthen the safety net for families suffering economic losses as a result of the pandemic. Baltimore County Government and Baltimore County Public Schools have provided more than six million meals for County residents. Learn more about food resources.

Learn more about these initiatives and other efforts to respond to the pandemic.


Further Efforts to Reshape Transportation Infrastructure in the County

Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski today called on the state of Maryland to provide severely needed funding to Baltimore County’s historically underinvested transportation infrastructure during the Maryland Department of Transportation’s annual Consolidated Transportation Program (CTP) Meeting in Baltimore County.

“A robust transportation system is critical to Baltimore County’s future. My administration has taken unprecedented efforts to develop a new vision for the future of transportation and we need the state to be a strong partner by making long-overdue investments to support our growing population,” said Olszewski. “My administration will continue to innovate— and advocate—for our residents so that we can create safer, more vibrant, and more inclusive communities across Baltimore County.”

Every year, the Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) holds meetings in every jurisdiction across the state to discuss updates to the CTP, Maryland’s six-year capital budget for transportation projects.

In his April 2020, request to the Maryland Department of Transportation, Olszewski requested items to address traffic concerns in areas around the County and accommodate past and future planned growth, including:

  • A long-needed interchange at Interstate 795 and Dolfield Boulevard—a request the County has made since 2007

  • A full interchange at 1-695 and Broening Highway to maximize redevelopment activities at Trade Point Atlantic

  • Support for the growth of Baltimore County Locally Operated Transit system, including the Towson Circulator

  • State support for Capital funds for bicycle and pedestrian project initiatives for Northeast Trail (Perry Hall) and Osler Drive (Towson) as well as a Safe Routes to School grant in the Sparrows Point area

  • A needed traffic congestion study along the Liberty Road Corridor

  • A commitment from the state to complete their portion of Kenwood Avenue to enhance pedestrian safety for Overlea High School

According to the 2020 MDOT financial plan, Baltimore County received $0 in capital funding, and only $416,000 in operational funding for its Locally Operated Transit System—a reduction from 2019 funds despite the County’s requests for additional funding.

During Baltimore County’s 2020 virtual meeting today, Olszewski reiterated the need for state support in line with what other counties receive in order to invest in the infrastructure to begin expanding the County's transit system.

Additionally, Olszewski highlighted his administration’s efforts to reshape transportation infrastructure. Since taking office in 2018, Baltimore County has:

  • Created the County’s first dedicated transportation bureau

  • Worked toward expanding Locally Operated Transit by investing in capital and operational funds for the Towson Circulator Pilot program

  • Dedicated $1.8 million for bike lanes and pedestrian access

  • Invested record funding in road resurfacing and traffic calming funding

  • Began modernizing Baltimore County’s Bike and Pedestrian Plan —which had not been updated since 2006

The Baltimore region is one of the 20 most congested areas in the United States, with the average commute time topping 30 minutes. For residents who travel by MTA bus, commute times are often much longer.


 
 
Revised October 16, 2020               
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