The State Shelter Subsidy Grant Program (SSSG) provides up to 50% of an emergency shelter or voucher program's annual operating budget. These funds are available to programs with additional funding needs due to renovation/expansion of an existing shelter facility, the development of an existing building into a shelter facility, the expansion (or development) of shelter services or the inability of a shelter program to obtain adequate funding to continue an existing level of service. Estimates of the homeless population in Wisconsin range from 29,000 to 34,000.
An eligible applicant may be a county or municipal governing body or agency, a community action agency, or other private non-profit or for-profit organization. Only generic emergency facility or voucher programs are eligible. Individuals and families who are homeless are eligible for shelter and related services. Domestic Abuse and Runaway shelters are not eligible.
The annual state appropriation is shared among Milwaukee County, Dane County, and balance of state areas and is available for three pre-determined allocations based on shelter use within each area. Grant amounts, which range from $1,100 to $60,000, are enhanced through the use of funds from the Interest Bearing Real Estate Trust Account (IBRETA) funds.
In many areas, a local shelter or service provider is the designated lead agency which works with other shelters to develop a plan for distributing funds earmarked for that community. This plan is submitted in their application to Division of Energy, Housing and Community Resources (DEHCR) and must be endorsed by all shelters in that community. The grant to the lead agency may not exceed 50% of the participating shelters combined operating budgets.
The balance of state shelter programs apply directly to DEHCR for a grant. Funds are distributed by formula to all eligible applicants. The formula is based on the estimated number of shelter nights each applicant provides compared to the total number of shelter nights the balance of state agencies estimate they will provide. No applicant may receive a grant greater than 50% of its operating budget.
The grant cycle for this program begins in late summer, when notices of available State Shelter Subsidy funding are sent to potential grantees. Applications are available on the DEHCR website, by e-mail, or hard copy. Applications are due to DEHCRin the all and grant contracts begin in January.
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