Lofgren, Eshoo, Khanna, Panetta Announce $21+ Million in Federal Emergency Rental Assistance Funding for Santa Clara County

May 11, 2021
Press Release
Will Benefit Renters, Landlords; Help Prevent Evictions; Address Housing Affordability, Homelessness Challenges

SANTA CLARA COUNTY, CA – Today, U.S. Representatives Zoe Lofgren (CA-19), Anna Eshoo (CA-18), Ro Khanna (CA-17) and Jimmy Panetta (CA-20) announced that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and U.S. Department of the Treasury will provide $21,315,291.50 for emergency rental assistance in Santa Clara County, which will help prevent evictions and ensure basic housing security for those impacted by the affordable housing challenges exacerbated by COVID-19.

This funding was included in the American Rescue Plan (ARP), which Lofgren, Eshoo, Khanna and Panetta voted in favor of and the House passed at the end of February. The ARP was signed into law by President Biden in March. In total, more than $2 billion ($2,065,640,340.90) will be provided in ARP emergency rental assistance in California and $21.55 billion across the country.

“For more than a year, the COVID-19 pandemic has created many challenges for families in Santa Clara County. Unfortunately, our already-existing home affordability challenges were worsened. Fortunately, help is on the way thanks to the American Rescue Plan,” said Rep. Zoe Lofgren. “This funding will importantly help prevent homelessness and evictions in our community.”

“Santa Clara County residents were already facing unsustainable housing costs before the pandemic decimated family finances. Now, far too many are facing evictions and homelessness. This funding from the American Rescue Plan will go directly to those who need it most. Keeping families safe and sheltered will continue to be one of my top priorities,” said Rep. Anna Eshoo.

“The coronavirus pandemic has pushed the Bay Area’s homelessness crisis to new extremes, leaving far too many out on the street or behind in rent,” said Rep. Ro Khanna. “This funding from the American Rescue Plan will provide much-needed relief to keep many of our most vulnerable neighbors in their own homes. Especially as real estate prices continue to skyrocket, I’m grateful to see President Biden recognize the urgency of the situation here in Silicon Valley.”

"The economic impacts of COVID-19 have threatened the housing security of families across the Central Coast,” said Rep. Jimmy Panetta.  “Fortunately, we in Congress acted to ease this pressure for renters by passing the American Rescue Plan, which made this emergency rental assistance for Santa Clara County possible.  These funds will keep roofs over heads, ensuring that those impacted can better succeed in the long-term as they recover from this pandemic.”

The Emergency Rental Assistance program funds go directly to state and local government entities. Households and landlords in need should contact the County of Santa Clara Office of Supportive Housing or the CA COVID-19 Rent Relief call center at 833-430-2122.

Along with the infusion of additional support because of the ARP, the U.S. Department of the Treasury issued updated, strengthened guidance to expedite funds to renters and target those most severely in need of assistance. For example, the guidance makes clear that the $21.55 billion of emergency rental assistance made available through the Emergency Rental Assistance program must be offered directly to renters when landlords do not accept direct payment. The guidance also reduces burdensome documentation requirements and wait times that can slow down assistance.