This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

MADISON COUNTY, Ala. – The online application portal for the Madison County Emergency Rental Assistance Program is now up and running.

After a lengthy delay, the county is now accepting Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) applications from tenants in non-Huntsville areas of Madison County who were impacted by COVID-19.

The Madison County Commission cited its lack of experience with handling programs like these as a major factor behind the delay in the rollout. In February, Alabama received $263 million dollars in federal funding for its ERA, of which $5.2 million dollars was allocated to Madison County.

For the first 90 days of the program, Huntsville residents will not be eligible to apply, since the City of Huntsville has its own ERA program. People who have applied for the State of Alabama’s ERA program are also ineligible to apply.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Must be obligated to pay rent on a residential dwelling in Madison County.
  • One or more individuals within the household has qualified for unemployment benefits or experienced a reduction in household income, incurred significant costs, or experienced other financial hardship due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
  • Must be able to demonstrate risk of experiencing homelessness or housing instability.
  • The household has an income at or below 80% of area median income (AMI) Madison County Income Limits.