Kansas agency faces pressure to speed aid, prevent evictions

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FILE – In this Aug. 4, 2021, file photo, housing advocates protest on the eviction moratorium in New York. The Supreme Court is allowing evictions to resume across the United States, blocking the Biden administration from enforcing a temporary ban that was put in place because of the coronavirus pandemic. Roughly 3.5 million people in the United States said they faced eviction in the next two months, according to Census Bureau data from early August. (AP Photo/Brittainy Newman, File)

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A state agency is trying to process hundreds of applications for coronavirus relief funds from Kansas renters facing eviction and their landlords.

The Kansas Housing Resources Corporation‘s push comes after it spent weeks this spring hiring more than 100 new employees to handle applications.

It is handling the bulk of the emergency rental assistance in Kansas, and most of its dollars haven’t yet been distributed.

Executive director Ryan Vincent said the agency is now finishing about 500 applications a week.

The agency has distributed $31.9 million. That’s 17% of the $188 million first installment of emergency aid. One tenants’ advocate says the money is not going out quickly enough.

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