PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — As the State of Oregon struggles to get rental assistance out the door, housing providers are demanding answers and more accountability.
Officials from the Oregon Housing and Community Services previously thought they could get through the backlog by the end of the year, but it is now the middle of November and numbers show less than half of completed applications have received rental assistance so far.
Multifamily Northwest Executive Director Deborah Imse said housing providers and tenants have done their part and now it’s time for the state to do theirs.
Imse testified at the Senate Interim Committee on Housing and Development meeting this afternoon.
She said the state needs to start communicating with tenants and landlords about how much longer they could be waiting and make administrative changes immediately so we aren’t in this same situation months from now.
“That’s the reason that we are so emphatic that administrative issues need to be corrected because if they’re not corrected and corrected immediately, we’ll be having this same conversation when we start short session in February,” Imse said.
Imse also said she was shocked to hear the state is pausing accepting new applications Dec. 1 and worries that could lead to evictions of people who need help.
The committee was expected to discuss extending the eviction moratorium again Wednesday, but others said that still doesn’t solve the problem of getting these funds out faster.
OHCS said they are processing older applications first as a way to help prevent evictions and are continuing to add more staff.