Emergency Rental Assistance Program to begin providing help paying Internet bills
MADISON, Wis. — Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers is announcing the state’s rental assistance program will now begin helping select families pay for their Internet connection.
“The past year and a half has underscored the fact that access to affordable high-speed internet is a necessity to how we live, learn, and work,” Gov. Evers said in a statement announcing the move. “This additional resource coupled with our recent announcement of Broadband Access funding across the state should go a long way toward helping folks remain connected, make ends meet, and bounce back from the COVID-19 pandemic.”
The Wisconsin Emergency Rental Assistance Program will provide the Internet bill assistance to those who meet certain criteria. In order to qualify, people must have:
- One or more individuals in a household who have qualified for unemployment benefits or have experienced a reduction in household income or experienced financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic
- One or more individuals in a household who can demonstrate a risk of housing instability or becoming homeless
- A household income at or below 80% of the median monthly income in their county.
According to the state, 80% of the median monthly income in Dane County would be $4,663 for a single person, $5,329 for a two-person household and $5,996 for a four-person household. In Rock County, it’s $3,408 for a single person, $3,896 for two people and $4,867 for a household of four.
The assistance is being paid for out of the $322 million the state received from the first round of federal Emergency Rental Assistance funds during the pandemic. Wisconsin’s Department of Administration will handle applications and distribute the assistance.
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