San Bernardino County has established the San Bernardino County Rent Relief Partnership. This emergency rental assistance program will leverage more than $46.8 million in federal Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 funds to provide rental and utility assistance to residents impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The county has teamed up with Inland SoCal 211+ to administer the Rent Relief Program, which will provide up to 12 months of rental arrears and prospective rent payments as well as utility arrears and prospective assistance.

“This program will bring much-needed relief to tenants trying desperately to stay in their homes and, in turn, landlords who have been hard-hit by the economic effects of the pandemic,” said County Board of Supervisors Chairman Curt Hagman. “The county’s partnership with Inland SoCal 211+ is a key step toward economic recovery for our region.”

The county’s program will target its efforts to the most vulnerable individuals/households that have experienced the greatest impacts due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Inland SoCal 211+ began accepting applications on Monday, April 12. Plans call for the program to be available through Dec. 31 or until all funds are exhausted, whichever occurs first.

For more information, visit the county’s website at sbcountycdha.com/community-development-and-housing-department or ISC211’s website at iscuw.org/sbcrent.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will provide financial assistance for funeral expenses for deaths related to COVID-19. Beginning Monday, April 12, FEMA began accepting applications through a dedicated call center. The assistance is a provision under the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2021 and the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, which will cover up to $9,000 of verified expenses for funeral services and interment or cremation. The aid is for funeral expenses incurred after January 20, 2020.

Applications are only taken over the assistance toll-free phone number, (844) 684-6333. To be eligible for COVID-19 funeral assistance, the policy states:

● The applicant must be a U.S. citizen, non-citizen national, or qualified alien.

● If multiple individuals contributed toward funeral expenses, they should apply under a single application as applicant and co-applicant.

● An applicant may apply for multiple deceased individuals.

● This assistance is limited to a maximum financial amount of $9,000 per funeral and a maximum of $35,500 per application.

After applying on the phone, applicants need to submit supporting documentation, including:

● An official death certificate that attributes the death to COVID-19 and shows that the death occurred in the United States.

● Funeral expense documents (receipts, funeral home contract, etc.) that include the applicant’s name, the deceased individual’s name, the amount of funeral expenses and dates the funeral expenses were incurred.

● Proof of funds received from other sources specifically for use toward funeral costs. Funeral assistance can not duplicate benefits received from burial or funeral insurance, financial assistance received from voluntary agencies, federal/state/local/tribal/territorial government programs or agencies or other sources.

To apply, visit fema.gov/disasters/coronavirus/economic/funeral-assistance.

As of April 13, San Bernardino County recorded 293,925 total cases, up 2,197 from last week’s 291,728. The county recorded 288,466 recoveries, up 1,999 from last week’s 286,467. A total of 4,240 deaths have been recorded, up 111 from last week’s 4,129. The case fatality rate remains at 1.4%

The 100 hospital patients are down one from the previous week’s 101. The patients are using 3.9% of the beds, down from the previous week’s 4.2%. The county recorded 24 positive ICU patients, down eight from the previous week. COVID-19 patients are occupying 5.5% of these beds.

As of Tuesday, April 13, the county dropped into the Minimal (yellow) Tier in two categories monitored by the California Department of Public Health. The county’s positivity rate per 100,000 residents is 1.9%, which is within the Yellow Tier’s range of under 2%. The county’s positivity rate in healthy places index is also 1.9%.

According to John Hopkins University, San Bernardino County remains eighth in total COVID-19 cases out of the country’s 3,143 counties. Riverside County is sixth with 296,635 cases. Los Angeles County has the most with over 1 million cases.  

Redlands numbers

Redlands recorded 8,699 total cases, 60 more cases than the previous week’s 8,639. Redlands’ total death count remains at 204 deaths. During the week of March 28, the city had 19 new cases and a test positivity rate of 0.8%. The previous week, the city had 15 new cases and a test positivity rate of 1.1%.

During the week of March 28, Redlands Unified recorded 32 new cases among residents living within the district, bringing the daily case rate to 3.5 per 100,000 residents. The district remains in the Orange Tier.