County staff already processing 682 applications submitted for Emergency Rental Assistance Program

Twelve payments made as of May 26

To see the Emergency Rental Assistance Program Checklist, click on this link. Image courtesy Sarasota County

As of 8 a.m. on Wednesday, May 26, Sarasota County staff was processing 682 applications submitted to the Emergency Rental Assistance Program, and another 534 applications had been turned in to staff, Emergency Services Media Relations Officer Sara Nealeigh reported in an email.

“Twelve applications have been paid,” she wrote.

The $13-million Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) “went live” on May 5. The funding allocated to Sarasota County from the U.S. Department of the Treasury is available to persons who have suffered financial ramifications of the COVID-19 pandemic and need help paying rent and utility bills, county staff has explained.

ERAP ambassadors stationed at various locations throughout the county assisted 160 applicants the week of May 17 to May 21, Nealeigh added in her May 26 update. So far, she added, a total of 519 applicants have received help from ambassadors since the program launched on May 5.

The ambassadors are working at the following sites:

  • Betty J. Johnson Library, located at 2801 Newtown Blvd. in Sarasota — 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday;10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday.
  • Fruitville Library, located at 100 Apex Road in Sarasota — 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday.
  • Englewood CRA, located at 370 W. Dearborn, Suite D, in Englewood — by appointment only, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.
  • Laurel Community Center, located at 509 Collins Road in Nokomis —by appointment only; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday.
  • North Port Social Services, located at 6919 Outreach Way in North Port — by appointment only; 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.
  • Goodwill, located at 1781 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Way in Sarasota — 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Further, Nealeigh noted, the week of May 17, the ERAP Call Center answered 434 calls; altogether, the center has handled 1,162 calls since the application process began.

The ERAP Call Center is available 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday by calling 941-861-RENT.

Nealeigh also pointed out that landlords can apply for rent payments prior to a tenant’s submitting an application. “Landlords do not need to wait to be contacted by their tenants or the Emergency Rental Assistance program to submit their portion of the application,” she wrote. “Landlords should submit just one application,” Nealeigh added. They will be able to add multiple tenants to it, she pointed out.

More information on the ERAP that is specific to landlords is available here.

The application portal for the ERAP can be found at

For more information on ERAP assistance, including eligibility, required documents, FAQs and program ambassadors, visit or call 941-861-RENT (7368).