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City of Jackson proposes using relief funds for homeless prevention measures

Where coronavirus relief checks go, fraudsters follow
Posted at 7:52 PM, May 21, 2020

JACKSON, Mich. — The City of Jackson is proposing plans to use federal coronavirus (COVID-19) relief funds to administer homeless prevention initiatives for residents. The city is set to receive more than $756,000 in Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

Plans call for $385,000 to be used for homeless prevention efforts. This includes $125,000 for water shutoff protection, $60,000 for foreclosure prevention, and $120,000 for eviction protection. An additional $60,000 is budgeted for the City of Jackson and $20,000 for the Community Action Agency (CAA) to administer these programs.

The first step, according to the city, will be holding a public hearing to receive feedback from residents during the City Council meeting scheduled for Tuesday, May 26. After resident feedback is collected and plans are approved, eligible residents will be able to apply to participate in these relief funds. The CAA is working with the city to administer these planned programs.

“This partnership will allow us to provide needed services to the greatest number of people both in the City of Jackson and Jackson County,” said Toby Berry, CEO of the CAA. "It is only with this type of coordination will we be able to mitigate the economic hardship caused by the COVID-19 pandemic."

Mayor Derek Dobies says leaders are still making plans for the rest of the COVID-19 funds, but this is an important first step.

“The coronavirus pandemic has created hardship for a lot of Jackson families and it’s incumbent that we use these funds to protect the most vulnerable among us,” said Mayor Dobies. “Keeping people in their homes, and keeping water turned on, will better help protect public health as we begin to reopen our city.”

Resident feedback on this proposed funding can be submitted to the City Clerk’s Office using or the City Hall drop box by 5:00 p.m. on May 26. Comments will be read aloud during the hearing. The council meeting starts at 6:00 p.m. and can be viewed on the city’s Facebook page and website.

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