Washington, D.C. – Today, Oregon lawmakers announced that the U.S. Treasury is awarding new rental assistance funding to both the State of Oregon and City of Portland. Oregon Housing and Community Services will receive $2,034,948.16 and the City of Portland will receive $1,107,256.77. The funding comes in the wake of Governor Tina Kotek declaring a “Homelessness State of Emergency” earlier this month and unveiling her $130 million budget. The state legislature is anticipated to take up numerous housing priorities including funding for affordable housing construction and more support for services for people at risk of becoming homeless.
The members of Oregon’s congressional delegation called on the Treasury Department to send additional emergency rental assistance funding last year.
“This funding comes at a crucial time for Oregonians facing the tightest rental market in decades,” said Congressman Earl Blumenauer, “For years, I’ve worked to make the federal government a better partner with local communities to solve the housing crisis. I am pleased the federal government is working in partnership with our state and local communities to get help to those in need.”
”Housing is a human right, and these federal resources will help to make that right a reality for Oregonians struggling to make their monthly rental payments,” said Senator Ron Wyden, author of the Decent, Affordable, Safe Housing for All (DASH) Act. “This assistance takes a good step forward to help renters in Portland and throughout Oregon, and I’ll continue battling to secure all the federal support needed to help make real gains in battling homelessness and major housing affordability challenges facing communities statewide.”
“This funding tackles one of the most urgent crises in Oregon—housing affordability,” said Senator Jeff Merkley. “For many families, the ongoing pandemic has caused loss of income and new, unexpected costs, making it especially hard to keep up with rent. No one should have to choose between putting food on their table or a roof over their head. I’m grateful Oregonians will benefit from this funding—a helping hand to continue making their monthly rent payments.”
“Emergency rental assistance through the American Rescue Plan helped keep many Oregonians in their homes throughout the worst stretches of the pandemic,” said Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici. “As many in our state continue to struggle with high rents amid a serious housing shortage, I am grateful that Oregon and the City of Portland will receive more than $3 million in additional emergency rental assistance funds.”