Rental assistance available for residents of Collier County

Published: May 2, 2022 9:57 PM EDT
Updated: May 3, 2022 7:40 AM EDT

If you are behind on rent or utilities and it’s related to the pandemic, there’s money to help. A program is offering millions of dollars to renters in Collier County.

“I’m hoping that they won’t look at this as a disgrace but more as an assistance,” said Penny Taylor, the District 4 County Commissioner.

Collier County’s Community and Human Services Division says the funds must be used by September 30th.

“There were several who said that they went on there to apply and that it stated that it had to be COVID-related and so that was the deterrent for them because they thought, ‘OK, well, I have to be dealing with COVID, and that wasn’t the case,'” said Elizabeth Radi with the Collier County Tenant’s Union.

Radi says there’s a lot of confusion. She posted to Facebook asking for feedback about the county programs and the process to apply.

Last month WINK News spoke with a woman who received help through the rental assistance program. She said the process took several weeks.

Radi says she’s hearing a different story.

“Some of those that were deterred to not finish it felt like it was a little overwhelming, it was just way too… it was confusing and complex to them,” Radi said. “They were discouraged in finishing the application. Those that did go through the application, there were many that stated that it was a very long, tedious process.”

The nurse who we spoke with last month said the whole process from start to finish took her about three weeks.