Dear Neighbors & Friends,
We just passed the solstice and Alaskans are fully in summer activities! Summer is certainly lightening the load of the pandemic, but for many the uncertainty around employment, housing, child care, and school in the fall are stresses looming in the background that don’t go away with the sunshine. We must continue our work to improve the relief programs and keep in touch so we can add additional relief where needed. We need to move CARES Act funds around to get them to the highest need areas to make sure every penny is spent as effectively as possible. We are here to help. Please call the office at 269-0144 or my cell at 360-4047.
SUMMER CONSTITUENT MEETING TUESDAY, JUNE 30TH, 6 PM
Senator Begich and I hope you can join us for a virtual constituent meeting next Tuesday. We look forward to hearing from you and answering questions. We want to know – How are you? How is your family? Have you used a state or federal program? Did it work? What are the unmet needs? What do we need to do going forward? Your input is always important, but now more than ever, we need to hear from you. The government programs so far have had issues and while some of that is to be expected going forward we need to do better so that programs can get to the people in need, and without having to submit multiple applications to multiple organizations.
Also, since we last met there has been worldwide action in the Black Lives Matter movement. This has been a powerful response calling for long overdue action on some of our toughest issues. We must confront racism and work to make Alaska the place where every person has opportunities and is treated fairly. We must achieve equity and justice for all. Senator Begich and I have long been involved in justice work and we can share opportunities for improvement. What are your ideas? Please join us!
TWO HOUSING RELIEF PROGRAMS NOW AVAILABLE – DON’T DELAY AND PLEASE SHARE!
Using CARES Act funds to prevent homelessness is among the best uses of this federal aid. I pushed for more funds going for this use, but am pleased that now with both a state and local program more people will receive assistance. There are currently two housing assistance programs available to Anchorage residents in need: one through the state administered by Alaska Housing Finance Corporation and one through the Municipality of Anchorage administered by United Way.
State Alaska Housing Finance Corporation (AHFC) Relief Program
The AHFC Alaska Housing Relief Program offers Alaskans assistance to cover rent and mortgage payments. The grants of up to $1,200 will be determined by a lottery. Payments will be made directly to landlords or mortgage lenders.
To be eligible for this program applicants must be earning less than 80% of the median income for their community. Applicants must also be able to show that their household income has been reduced due to COVID-19. AHFC anticipates giving out over 8,000 grants.
The application period for AFHC grants closes tomorrow, Friday, June 26th. Apply today at AlaskaHousingRelief.org.
Municipality of Anchorage Assistance United Way Program
The Municipality of Anchorage assistance program is a little different and requires a separate application. To apply for this program, residents need to call 2-1-1 and answer a series of screening questions. Interpreters are available at 2-1-1 to provide translation services over the phone. All screened applicants will be contacted to set up an appointment. Applicants will need to bring a photo ID, a rental/lease agreement or mortgage statement, and a copy of their most recent paystub or self-employment identification. Rental or mortgage assistance will be made out directly to landlords or mortgage companies, not to renters or borrowers.
The period will remain open until funds are exhausted or September 30, 2020, whichever comes first. Call 2-1-1 to apply.
UPCOMING COMMUNITY COUNCIL MEETINGS
Meetings have slowed down for summer, but don’t forget about your community council Facebook page as a way to keep in touch with neighbors!
Keep in touch with Airport Heights happenings here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/101546559886095/
Visit the Mountain View Community Council Facebook page here: neighbors:
To keep in touch with Russian Jack neighbors, please visit here: https://www.facebook.com/RussianJackcommunity/
We will keep you posted on future meetings.
Until next time,
P.S. For information on absentee voting, please go here: http://www.elections.alaska.gov/Core/AKVoteEarly.php