Maricopa ‘threshold’ Program Offers Rent for Homeless

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Maricopa County officials say efforts to help the homeless have fallen short at a critical step in their process of getting off the streets, and a new program aims to help.

The county announced Tuesday the approval to spend $5 million in American Rescue Plan Act funds to help formerly-homeless residents afford their first rental. Named “Threshold,” the program is a collaboration between property owners and managers, the county’s Human Services Department, and the local nonprofit HOM, Inc.

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“Reducing homelessness requires an ‘all hands on deck’ approach—from emergency shelter services at times of crisis to permanent housing and resources that lead to self-sufficiency,” said Board of Supervisors Chairman Bill Gates, District 3. “This partnership ensures people working to end their homelessness have a path into the rental market.”

Through Threshold, the county will give property owners rent, financial incentives, and other supports in exchange for housing someone as they begin the transition out of homelessness and get on firm financial footing.

“We believe individuals, families, and communities are safer, healthier, and stronger when everyone has a home,” said Mike Shore, President, and CEO of HOM, Inc. “The Threshold network recognizes that engaged property owners and managers are instrumental to helping people exit homelessness and seeks to make them collaborative partners in solving the housing crisis.”

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Threshold is the latest in a $77 million effort to get many of the county’s thousands of homeless off the streets. As of Jan. 24, the Maricopa Association of Governments estimated 9,026 homeless people in the county.

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This article was published by The Center Square and is reproduced with permission.

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