WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Treasury Department said on Friday it disbursed about $2.9 billion in Emergency Rental Assistance funds to 665,000 renters and landlords during November, putting the program on pace for total full-year 2021 obligations of $25-30 billion.
The Treasury also said it disbursed $1.1 billion in funding to communities deemed eligible for more funds as part of a reallocation process started at the end of September. More than three quarters of these transfers were accomplished through voluntary transfers between communities in the same state.
The $46.5 billion in rental assistance program funding was approved in two COVID-19 aid bills in December 2020 and March 2021. But the locally administered program was slow to ramp up, with some jurisdictions taking longer to launch programs and others facing less demand from renters and landlords.
Communities that had obligated at least 65% of their first-round allocation were eligible for additional funds, while those allocating less than 30% stood to lose funds.
November marked a new high for disbursements and the third straight month above $2.8 billion and 500,000 recipients, the department said.
(Reporting by David Lawder)