Tarrant County Administrator G.K. Maenius announced Wednesday the creation of a rental assistance program to aid county residents whose income has been reduced due to COVID.

The CARE 4 Tarrant Rental Assistance Program aims to help the nearly 40% of Tarrant County residents who rent their homes, and who have been unable to pay rent due to layoffs, a reduction in hours, the need to provide care for a child or elderly or disabled person, or because of a need to isolate to prevent severe illness.

Maenius explained the CDC issued an order in September to temporarily halt residential evictions to prevent the further spread of COVID. On January 1, 2021, landlords will again be able to evict tenants due to repayment of rent.

“The [CDC] eviction moratorium is not the same as rental forgiveness,” said Maenius. “Rent is still due.”

To prevent what could be mass evictions after the first of the year, continued Maenius, Tarrant County has dramatically increased support efforts and will continue accepting applications for assistance through December 9, 2020.

The county plans to post yard signs in high-traffic areas and near multi-family apartment complexes. The county has created an outreach kit and Maenius asked community partners like GRACE to “please share these materials with your communications and outreach teams, community organizations, and neighborhood liaisons.”

To reach the Care4Tarrant rental assistance hotline, call 817-850-7940, or go to renthelp.tarrantcounty.com.