CUFA is working to make our sewer bills affordable for everyone, and this week, we need your help to push your Ohio Legislature members to pass our bills to expand sewer customer assistance programs.
Here is the top action we are asking you to take this week:
Under Ohio law, the Metropolitan Sewer District (MSD) can only do sewer bill assistance programs for low-income seniors. CUFA has worked with Senator Cecil Thomas, and Representatives Catherine Ingram and Bill Seitz to get legislation introduced to expand allowable customer assistance to:
- all seniors,
- low- and moderate-income persons, and
- people experiencing temporary hardships.
The legislation would allow MSD to expand assistance programs to help more people in Hamilton County struggling to afford the sewer portion of the water/sewer bill.
Contact your state legislators today, and tell them to pass this bill immediately. You can email, tweet at or call them using this action page!
What's Happening This Week
Don't forget to RSVP here for our Thursday, June 3 virtual event 6:30-8PM "What does Redistricting Have to Do With Me?"
Ohio recently voted on two ballot issues to change the way our state and congressional districts are drawn. This year, Ohio redraws the lines. How do the ballot issues change the process for mapping Ohio's districts? How might it impact our votes? Learn more and discuss redistricting in this Zoom Popular Education event with CUFA, Common Cause & League of Women Voters of Greater Cincinnati. In the meantime, share the event! Download a flyer to print or image to share electronically. Invite friends and family on Facebook here.
The Ohio Legislature has introduced a bill to restrict absentee voting
WCPO reports the proposed bill, sponsored by Rep. Bill Seitz, would: "limit ballot dropbox locations to three per county and remove an absentee voter's ability to correct their ballot if it was submitted incorrectly." Read more on proposed House Bill 294 on WCPO here.
There have been some changes to the Centers For Disease Control's eviction moratorium
From National Housing Law Project (NHLP): "On Wednesday, a federal district court in Washington, D.C. issued a ruling vacating the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Eviction Halt Order. Also on Wednesday, the judge issued a temporary stay of her order. There has been significant confusion about the legal status of the CDC moratorium. For now, Wednesday’s ruling has no effect on the CDC eviction moratorium, and individual tenants may continue to seek protection under the CDC's halt order if they qualify." The recent court actions are confusing, but NHLP recommends that if you think you may qualify for protection from eviction under the CDC's order, use this form to declare your qualification to your landlord.
Other Important Information
Current COVID-hardship Assistance available through Job & Family Services & Community Action Agency
Here is the current CARES link for HCJFS: Apply for CARES Act Rent and Utility Assistance Program - Hamilton County Job & Family Services (hcjfs.org)
Here is the current CAA link for the CAA Home Relief Program: https://www.cincy-caa.org/what-we-do/supportive-services/caa-home-relief.html
Watch the May 6 Sewer Backup Program 101
In case you missed it, watch the Sewer Backup Program 101 here. CUFA's Sewer Justice Team hosted Legal Aid attorney Matt Fitzsimmons to summarize qualifications, outline MSD's legal responsibility, and cover some tips for getting the help you need from the MSD backup programs when the sewers fail.
Watch the March 4 CUFA Town Hall: Navigating Housing & Utility Assistance
Are you or someone you know having trouble navigating assistance programs? On Thursday, March 4, Communities United For Action hosted speakers from local utilities and agencies to talk about available assistance programs and how to apply. Watch it here and get the links and contact information shared about local programs here.
CUFA has postcards (pictured below) you can give or mail to family and friends asking them to join CUFA. Sign up here to get some postcards! This is the LAST Week to win CUFA's Membership Challenge! From Jan. 30-June 1st, the person who recruits the most new members will win a $25 Visa Card!
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