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State's rent-relief portal closes as funds run out sooner than expected

Although they had planned to take applications for two weeks, it only took one day and more than 70,000 requests for the well to dry up.

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — As of noon Thursday, applications were no longer being accepted for Texas Rent Relief program that was set to help thousands of Americans with their bills. 

The rent-relief application portal opened to great fanfare on Tuesday morning and within 24 hours, plans were being made to shut it down.

Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs said that there wasn’t enough money to meet the demand.

When it was announced that $96 million in new funding was available to help Texas renters with their housing needs, everyone suspected that the money likely would go quickly.

What we didn’t know was just how quickly.

Although state officials planned to take applications for two weeks, it only took one day -- and more than 70,000 requests -- for the well to dry up.

With the number of renters in our state -- a figure that sits at just over 40 percent here in Corpus Christi -- it is no shock that the demand would be high.

Corpus Christi Housing Authority CEO Gary Allsup said that the portal's closing paints a strong picture about how many Americans are in need of assistance. 

“It does not surprise me at all that the applications would come in quicker, and for more money, than what anybody would have expected," he said.

In fact, he shared some good news in that regard. 

“The Housing Authority has just reopened our voucher waiting list," he said. "It has not been open for a very long time. The last time we opened it was in 2015 and we have been working off of that list since then."

While not everyone is approved, vouchers have proven to be a good solution for many. 

To apply for the voucher program, click here.

Keep in mind that it is not a first-come, first-served system, but one that tries to prioritize those who have the greatest need, especially veterans and the homeless.

For those who are facing eviction, more information can be found here.  

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