Maricopa County’s Contributions to Ending Regional Homelessness

Maricopa County Government
5 min readMar 1, 2022

Maricopa County Board of Supervisors Invests $265,652,907 to Address Homelessness, Rental Assistance, and Affordable Housing

March 2022

Like many other populous and growing metropolitan areas of our country, the availability of affordable housing has risen to a level of great concern for many Arizonans. A rapid rise in housing costs combined with a stagnant wage can force many individuals and families to be at risk of homelessness.

The lack of affordable housing is only one of many factors that may be contributing to the rise of homelessness in Maricopa County, as indicated by the Maricopa Association of Governments’ Point-in-Time Count of people experiencing homelessness.

“Knowing that there has been an increase in people experiencing homelessness over time, and a greater demand for service related to homelessness, Maricopa County has been taking targeted actions to address this issue,” said Jacqueline Edwards, Director of Maricopa County Human Services. “Over the past two years, we have approached this complex issue holistically with a strategy that addresses the many root causes of homelessness — from case management services to employment services, rapid rehousing, funds to address unexpected expenses, rent and utility assistance, increasing shelter beds as well as contributing to landlord engagement programs, and funding affordable housing infill projects with non-profit and local government partners across the Valley.”

Maricopa County has prioritized an unprecedented level of funding to help bolster the regional response to homelessness. Through a variety of key partnerships with local governments, community stakeholders, and non-profit partners, Maricopa County provides solutions that make a world of difference those the people impacted by these resources.

Since April 2020, the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors has allocated $265,652,907 to address homelessness, rental assistance, and affordable housing through a variety of comprehensive approaches. These funds include:

· ARPA — $80,330,642 in Coronavirus and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds

· CARES Act — $66,916,258 in Coronavirus Relief Funds

· CARES Act — $5,950,627 in HUD Funds

· Federal Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) — $106,228,278

· Maricopa County General Fund — $5,930,566

· Community Services Block Grant — $296,536

These funds address a variety of approaches to meet the diverse needs of the people experiencing or at risk of homelessness:

Affordable Housing

· $30,236,552 in new, permanent affordable housing developments through the County

o 1500 Units projected to be available in 2024 for rent and purchase

o Maricopa County’s commitment to add 1500 new affordable housing units funds more than 120% of MAG’s Regional Homelessness Plan adopted in December 2021

Landlord Engagement

· $5,000,000 contract with HOM, Inc. for regional landlord engagement across the county

Legal Assistance for Renters

· $2.6 million in funding to provide legal services to renters at risk of eviction through a partnership with Community Legal Services

Rapid Rehousing and Flexible Funding to Keep Individuals Housed

· $4,000,000 for 300 households to be served through a contract with Community Bridges, Inc. and Mercy House

· $3,000,000 for 270 individuals to receive funds through the Human Services Campus to retain or obtain stable housing

· $3,720,627 in CARES Act HUD funds to support 106 households through contracts with Community Bridges, Inc., A New Leaf, native American Connections, and Save the Family

Rent and Utility Assistance

· Since July 2020, Maricopa County has committed $160,202,332 in rental and utility assistance through CARES Act and Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) programs to keep people housed and prevent evictions. Under ERA, more than 7,800 households have been served with an average of $1,310 in utility assistance and $8,270 in rent assistance from March 2021.

Shelter Beds

200 sleeping spaces provide a respite from the heat for Phoenix-area people experiencing homelessness from June — September 30 at the St. Vincent de Paul Watkins facility

· $21,000,000 to construct 352 new, permanent shelter beds

o Maricopa County’s commitment to add 352 shelter beds to the region’s capacity funds more than 45% of MAG’s Regional Homelessness Plan adopted in December 2021

o Shelter beds will be constructed through three community partners:

§ 72 Beds at UMOM New Day Center funded at $1,557,689

§ 100 Beds at St. Vincent de Paul Ozanam Manor funded at $6,000,000

§ 80 Beds at Tempe Community Action Agency funded at $6,000,000

§ 100 Beds at Community Bridges, Inc. funded at $7,442,311

· $930,566 in Maricopa County General Funds to support ongoing emergency shelter needs and support service at CASS at the Human Service Campus and providing diversion services to 772 individuals annually, funding (1) FTE

· $1,000,000 in Maricopa County General Funds to support regional initiatives, outreach, resource navigation, and (1) FTE to system improvements

· $4,000,000 in Maricopa County General Funds to support emergency and weather relief services to secure indoor sleeping spaces.

o 270 beds for weather relief at St. Vincent de Paul with transportation services from the Human Services Campus

o 50 beds at CASS

o 160 additional beds at the Human Services Campus

o Daytime programming and heat relief at CASS

Specialty COVID, Bridge, and Emergency Housing Options

· $14,494,090 in ARPA funds to provide bridge shelter services and services during COVID

o 144 beds available through June 30, 2022, for COVID isolation with healthcare, meals, and case management services

o 132 beds available through June 30, 2022, at 3 hotel properties for bridge housing with meals and case management services

· $12,942,204 in ARPA funds to provide bridge shelter services and services during COVID

o 144 beds available through June 30, 2022, for COVID isolation with healthcare, meals, and case management services

o 174 beds are available through June 30, 2022, at 4 facilities for bridge housing with case management services

· $296,536 in Community Services Block Grant funds to provide services in specific locales:

o 100 individuals served monthly in Avondale through the IHELP Shelter

o 10 individuals served nightly in Surprise through the creation of an IHELP Shelter

o 50 individuals served in Chandler with rapid rehousing

· $1,800,000 to support 160 individuals with temporary housing and case management services

· $430,000 to support the operation of 96 shelter beds at A New Leaf Emergency Shelter and navigation services for up to 160 individuals

You Might Also Like…

· 02/24/2021: Maricopa County Supports Tempe Micro Estates Homeownership

· 02/09/2022: Maricopa County Awards $6 Million to Support Food Bank Operations

· 02/02/2022: Maricopa County Lands an Additional $39 Million in Emergency Rental Assistance

· 02/01/2022: Maricopa County Steps Up Again To Assist Local Nonprofits

· 12/08/2021: Board of Supervisors Approves $28 Million in Investments to Address Homelessness

· 11/17/2021: Groundbreaking Marks Construction of Affordable Housing Collaboration

· 09/28/2021: Maricopa County Invests $15 Million in Domestic Violence Support Services

· 09/17/2021: Legal Services Now Available to Renters in Maricopa County

· 06/17/2021: Maricopa County Hits Milestone Providing Services to Unhoused Population

· 06/15/2021: New Cooled Sleeping Spaces Offer Relief from Soaring Heat

· 05/11/2021: Maricopa County Offers Safe Indoor Spaces

· 03/19/2021: Maricopa County Expands Rent and Utility Assistance