utility bill

Phase 2 of a program to provide assistance for Stillwater residents behind on rent and/or utility bills due to the COVID-19 pandemic goes live Sunday and Monday at ourdailybreadstillwater.org. Creative Commons

Phase II of the City of Stillwater’s assistance program for residents who have fallen behind on their rent or utility bills due to the COVID-19 pandemic launches this weekend. The online application goes live Sunday and will be open through Monday at ourdailybreadstillwater.org.

People who need help accessing the internet can contact Our Daily Bread Food and Resource Center at 701 E. 12th Ave. or got to the Stillwater Public Library, 1107 S. Duck St.

Applications can only be filed Sunday and Monday and Our Daily Bread will spend the rest of the week screening and processing the applications received on those days.

The process will be repeated each week until the funding is exhausted, City of Stillwater Director for Civic Innovation Becky Taylor said. The City hopes to have all funds distributed by the end of the year.

In December, the City of Stillwater allocated $150,000 in CARES Act funding to rent, utility and mortgage assistance for people who had economic losses or expenses related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Those funds were gone within weeks.

Seeing the need, city staff applied for federal funding to offer another phase of the assistance program but those federal dollars came with different requirements.

Stillwater was awarded $490,000 in Community Development Block Grant funding, which had more requirements than initially realized, delaying implementation of Phase II. Minus administrative costs, the City will have about $460,000 to distribute.

Our Daily Bread is responsible for processing the applications and the City of Stillwater will disburse the money, Taylor said. The process could take two weeks for ODB’s portion and a week for the City of Stillwater.

The qualifications are different for this program, which only covers past due rental or utility accounts. Applicants must be able to demonstrate their hardship is related to the pandemic.

“This phase of the program was funded differently and the new application process is more complicated,” Taylor said. “But we don’t want that to discourage anyone from applying. Our Daily Bread has people that are ready to help every step of the way.”

Applicants, who can only submit one request for this funding cycle, must live within the Stillwater city limits, be considered low to moderate income by HUD standards and will need the following information to complete the application:

  • Social security number

  • Legal identification

  • Current monthly household income

  • Proof of income like their 2019 tax return or 2020 tax return, their last 3 consecutive months of pay stubs for everyone in the household or their unemployment documentation, etc.

  • Utility bill if requesting help with utilities

  • Rent agreement/lease if requesting help with rent

For more information, contact Our Daily Bread at 405-533-2555 ext.110 or visit its website at https://www.ourdailybreadstillwater.org/

Twitter: @mcharlesNP

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