HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) — Madison County residents are losing their homes while waiting for COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance checks to come in the mail.

A growing number of tenants are facing eviction claiming that the state-run program that was supposed to help them has left them with nowhere to turn. 

Renters say they filled out the application for emergency rental assistance and they were approved for funds but unknown to them, the program has run out of money.  

In 2021 the City of Huntsville received $6 million from the CARES Act. Those funds were distributed through March of this year, and the city was then promised an additional $4 million from American Rescue Plan funding. Only $2 million has arrived in the city. 

“We have approximately $2 million that we are still waiting to receive,” said Scott Erwin, Huntsville Manager of Community Development. “We are approved for funding but the process from the U.S. Treasury Department has been slow. We believe we have completed everything.” 

As of 2022, the State of Alabama has one of the lowest eviction rates in the country but as inflation continues to devour sources of income, some Huntsville renters and businesses are still finding it difficult to make monthly rent payments. 

“We have been out of funds for about six weeks or more now, but we do hope that Treasury will be able to allocate the remaining funds to us,” Erwin explained. “Back in August all the funding was expended so they were still looking at applications and making applicants aware that we don’t have funding now.”

“We have filled out the applications and did everything we thought we needed to do,” he continued. “It’s just a process from the government of waiting for those funds to get received by this jurisdiction.”  

Erwin is pleading with landlords to be a little more patient in giving out eviction notices.