Centennial, county offer rent, mortgage, business assistance amid pandemic

Local governments distribute federal CARES Act funds

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The City of Centennial and Arapahoe County have announced rent, mortgage and business assistance for those affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

The funds come through the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, known as the CARES Act.

Here's a look at the programs and who qualifies.

Centennial utility, rent, mortgage help

Centennial receives annual funding for the federal Community Development Block Grant program, and this year, the city also received funding through the CARES Act.

Centennial allocated about $205,000 to help with utility, rent and mortgage costs for households with income up to 80% of the area's median income, according to a city news release. That's currently about $78,500 per year for a household of four, according to the county.

Arapahoe County administers the program. To be eligible for the assistance program, applicants must:

• Be a Centennial resident.

• Provide proof of applying for unemployment compensation.

• Provide proof of who lives in the household (by IDs or the lease showing all household members).

• Provide proof of income for everyone in the household for the past month via pay stubs, social security award letters, proof of child support or proof of other income.

• Provide a current signed lease or mortgage statement.

• Provide contact information for a landlord or mortgage company. Either must be willing to provide a W-9 form and accept payment from Arapahoe County.

The application, a PDF, can be downloaded by clicking here. Applicants should download it, fill it out and submit via email to housingassistance@arapahoegov.com, including the attachments from the eligibility list above.

The city suggests Fast Scanner as a free app to assist in sending documents. For assistance or to ask questions, call 303-738-8040 or email housingassistance@arapahoegov.com. Funds are limited.

Centennial business assistance

In partnership with Arapahoe County, the Centennial City Council directed $5 million to support Centennial's small-business community, according to a city news release.

The Centennial CARES: Small Business Grants are intended to help small businesses in Centennial impacted by the pandemic cover costs of re-opening and adapting to COVID-19 compliance requirements.

Grant applications and more information are available here. View information about eligibility at that webpage.

The grant funds cannot be used for expenses that were previously paid for using the federal Small Business Administration's Payroll Protection Program or Economic Injury Disaster Loan funds.

County rent, mortgage assistance

The county's CARES Act housing assistance program funds also are reserved for households with 80% or less of the area's median income.

The program aims to help households that have experienced income loss directly related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

To qualify for this assistance program, applicants must be Arapahoe County residents and have experienced COVID-19-related income loss. Applicants also must meet the same criteria that apply for Centennial's housing assistance program in the bullet-point list above.

To apply, visit tinyurl.com/CountyAssistanceApply. Applicants should download it, fill it out and submit via email to housingassistance@arapahoegov.com, along with scanned attachments based on the eligibility list for Centennial's criteria in the bullet-point list above.

For assistance or to ask questions, call 303-738-8040 or email housingassistance@arapahoegov.com.

County business assistance

The county also has directed CARES Act funding to help soften the pandemic's blow on small and medium-size businesses.

Advance Arapahoe, a $6 million grant program, will provide support and retain jobs at businesses throughout the county, according to a news release.

The program's first priority will be to fund employers within the boundaries of unincorporated Arapahoe County — the areas not located within a city or town — because most businesses in cities or towns can apply to relief programs through those jurisdictions.

Preference also will be given to employers who commit to retain or bring back employees to work with the funds.

Funds are available in two grant categories:

• Business-interruption grants to support needs such as lease or mortgage payments, utility expenses, payroll expense, supplies and services, and materials.

• Infrastructure and personal protective equipment, or PPE, grants to purchase items needed to adapt a business to new processes, or items needed to operate differently due to the pandemic.

Grants in both categories will be up to $20,000 depending on the size of the company.

Qualifying businesses must have operated a physical location in Arapahoe County since at least June 1, 2019, have 500 or fewer employees, be in good standing with regulatory agencies, meet minimum financial requirements and retain at least one job that meets low- to moderate-income requirements as a result of the assistance.

Applications for this program opened June 22, and the county extended the application deadline to Aug. 1. Businesses can apply here.

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