Johnstown will receive $149,428 in federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act funding to help residents facing a higher risk of eviction due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Community Development Block Grant money can be used to meet rent obligations for up to six months.

A program will be developed for dispersing the funds.

“That money will be used to help people catch up on their rent, to keep them from being evicted or those that are having trouble paying their rent remaining in their homes, basically that's the intent,” Mayor Frank Janakovic said. “We're trying to determine the process of applying for it at this time.”

The money is being directed to communities with high rates of individuals and businesses in industries with high job loss in states with high unemployment and where there are concentrations of those most at risk for coronavirus transmission and risk of eviction.

“Many Americans have lost their jobs during this pandemic and are facing the possibility of being evicted, through no fault of their own,” said U.S. Sen. Bob Casey Jr. in a released statement on Monday. “This funding is essential to providing support for Pennsylvanians who need temporary financial assistance to pay rent and weather the eviction crisis that the COVID-19 pandemic has created.”

All total, Pennsylvania will receive $1.988 billion in funding for the program.

Dave Sutor is a reporter for The Tribune-Democrat. He can be reached at (814) 532-5056. Follow him on Twitter @Dave_Sutor.

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