(Mountain View, Calif) – During their April 14 meeting, City of Mountain View Councilmembers approved an additional $1.134 million for the City’s COVID-19 Rent Relief Program. This is in addition to the $1.3 million relief package already passed in March that was earmarked to help local small businesses, seniors, homeless and the unstably housed, and provide services for community members in need due to COVID-19 related hardships.
The additional funds are from the City’s Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program, which is a federal fund awarded annually by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) for housing, infrastructure, economic development, or crisis recovery. A portion of the CDBG funds is provided from the federal stimulus package, called the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act). The City emphasis on investing the funds for rent relief underscores the testimony from emergency assistance experts that there is overwhelming need for rent relief during these unprecedented times, and that keeping families from losing their homes to begin with is the most successful and cost-effective way to prevent homelessness.
During the meeting, City Manager Kimbra McCarthy also presented an update on the City’s COVID-19 actions so far. Included was the more than $74,000 in generous donations that more than 400 members of the community have given to the #TogetherMV Fund to help their neighbors with rent relief or small business assistance, and another $100,000 pledged from LinkedIn for small business relief. The #TogetherMV Fund, managed by the Los Altos Community Foundation, launched on April 1 and saw 164 donations just in the first full day it was live.
“Between Council actions, private donations and the generosity of individual donors, this community has collectively invested more than $2.6 million for relief efforts that touch every person within its borders,” said Mayor Margaret Abe-Koga. “But even more impressive is how quickly we have been able to come together and make it all happen. Expedience in getting assistance out to those in need has to be the priority in our efforts.”
In addition to allocating the funds per staff recommendation, Council also directed staff to explore the feasibility of providing additional rent relief funding up to a potential $1 million, taking into account the City’s future fiscal situation and available resources. Council is expected to consider potential funding sources, and receive an update on the City’s budget and current fiscal year financial status, at the May 5 meeting.
For more information on actions the City has taken during the COVID-19 pandemic, local and regional resources available to residents and businesses, frequently asked questions and other important information, visit MountainView.gov/COVID and follow City Hall on social media through Twitter.MountainView.gov, Facebook.MountainView.gov, MountainView.gov/Instagram, log in to Nextdoor.com or subscribe to MountainView.gov/YouTube.