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Sun News: Federal Money That Helps Prevent Homelessness in Cleveland Heights a Challenge to Find

The Sun News profiled a Cleveland Heights resident on the brink of homelessness and described the process of how to receive the money and who is eligible

Since 2009, there have been about 1,700 eviction cases in Cleveland Heights, according to an article that ran Thursday in the Sun News. 

The newspaper profiled one of those Cleveland Heights residents who is now on the brink of homelessness and trying to find out ways to avoid sleeping on the streets or staying in a shelter. 

The city received $715,677 in stimulus money in May 2009 from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, and according to the article, there is still more than $500,000 left. 

However, the city is giving back about 80 percent of the remaining dollars to go somewhere else in Cuyahoga County. 

Read the full article in The Sun News to find out why the money is being sent back, and the process that someone facing eviction or homelessness must complete before being granted assistance. 

Brian Davis June 05, 2011 at 01:31 PM
To answer your question at the end of the article...the Northeast Ohio Coalition for the Homeless offered Cleveland Hts officials a proposal to hire an attorney for their municipal court to let people facing eviction know that there is assistance available. We sent this proposal to Cleveland Hts officials twice in 2010 when we realized that they were not spending their prevention funds in a timely manner. We never heard back from anyone from Cleveland Hts. For both the Cleveland Hts and Cuyahoga County prevention funds, they could have created a website with consistent information on eligibility and advertised that broadly. Instead a few people made the decisions and kept changing the procedure and eligibility requirements over the last year and a half. The City of Cleveland Hts. could have made this available to everyone facing eviction with a special brochure to all who get an eviction notice. In Lakewood, they sent a note out to every resident of Lakewood when they received the funds from the stimulus to assure that they would use all their stimulus funding. Lakewood is the model for how to distribute this assistance. They had a non-profit in their community who did all the work, and the City was very clear and transparent to all residents about the availability of these funds. Brian Davis NEOCH
Michelle Simakis (Editor) June 05, 2011 at 11:37 PM
Thanks for responding to my question on the website, Brian, and for returning my call. Did Lakewood also have a website?
Brian Davis June 06, 2011 at 11:21 AM
Yes, Lakewood Community Services has the information available on their website here: http://www.lcsclakewood.org/#!programs-and-services/vstc1=page-4 Lakewood has really done the project correctly and by January 2011 had used 67% of the funds. They are well on their way to using the $900,000 that they received from the federal stimulus. Brian Davis NEOCH
Brian Davis June 06, 2011 at 11:22 AM
Yes, Lakewood Community Services has the information available on their website here: http://www.lcsclakewood.org/#!programs-and-services/vstc1=page-4 Lakewood has really done the project correctly and by January 2011 had used 67% of the funds. They are well on their way to using the $900,000 that they received from the federal stimulus. Brian Davis NEOCH

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