FY22 FAQs

May 4, 2021

Eviction Help Illinois funding has been provided by the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS). IEJF has been charged with distributing the grant funding to civil legal aid and mediation organizations to assist Illinois residents facing eviction in accessing legal and mediation services. This funding was provided in response to the current eviction crisis which has been heightened by the public health pandemic. These funds are intended to support a state-wide eviction mitigation response.

This FAQ document is for all FY22 applicants to provide overall grant program information and vision; details on funded services and programmatic reporting; and information on financial reporting and obligations.

Eviction Help Illinois: FY22 Grant Program Information

How will grantees coordinate service to provide a “statewide” response?
Will current FY21 grantees have to reapply for FY22 funding?
How will rental assistance funds interact with services provided under this grant?
What is the income eligibility for client services?
Why is there funding provided to Cook County organizations when there is the Cook County Legal Aid for Housing and Debt (CCHLAD) and the Early Resolution Program (ERP)?

Funded Services under FY22 Grant

What services are eligible for funding under the FY22 Eviction Help Illinois Grant Program?
How do current grantees treat cases that carry over from FY21 to FY22?
What will happen if a grantee cannot meet the projections submitted with the grant application?
Are outreach efforts funded under this grant?
Can staff time spent on learning about changes in eviction moratorium and responses in local jurisdictions be funded this grant?

Programmatic Reporting Requirements

How often must reports be submitted to IEJF?
What type of information must be included in the monthly programmatic reports?
What type of information must be included in the final report?

Financial Requirements

For funded organizations, how are financial reports submitted?
When are financial reports due?
What does the budget narrative require?
What backup documentation is needed?
What type of description is needed within the G/L entries?


Eviction Help Illinois: FY22 Grant Program Information

Q. How will grantees coordinate services to provide a “statewide” response?

A. The technological infrastructure grantees from FY21 have coordinated a streamlined service delivery system with three points of entry including a statewide telephone hotline, website/chatbot, and text messaging.

  1. Telephone Hotline: Eviction Help IL has a statewide hotline number: 855.631.0811. Callers will be routed into one of three regional hotlines. Cook County callers will be routed into the CCHLAD program operated by CARPLS. Callers in the northern 36 counties will be routed into Prairie State Legal Services’ telephone hotline. Callers in the 65 central and southern counties will be routed into Land of Lincoln’s Legal Advice and Referral Center (LARC).
  2. Online: www.evictionhelpillinois.org serves as an online centralized point of entry for legal information, advice, and resources for evictions and a virtual assistant (or both) provides access to a variety of resources including: legal information, rental assistance, mediation and legal aid resources. This work will build off of the statewide Housing bots in COVID HELP and be done in collaboration with LCBH and its Rentervention.com program chatbot. Finally, ILAO will triage tenants with its Online Triage and Intake System (OTIS), accessible 24-7 through online applications in English and Spanish.
  3. SMS Messaging: ILAO will also provide eviction triage and legal applications to tenants via SMS, in English and Spanish, without the need to access the internet.

Q. Will current FY21 grantees have to reapply for FY22 funding?

A. Yes. The FY22 application requires submission of a budget and service projections that accounts for the full year of funding (July 1, 2021 – June 30, 2022).

Current grantees will need to re-apply to provide details on any change in strategy/service delivery for FY22, new service projections, and an appropriate budget to reflect the 12-month grant period. IEJF is cognizant of the fact current grantees were just awarded funding and will aim to only request information necessary to make determinations for the upcoming year.


Q. How will rental assistance funds interact with services provided under this grant?

A. It depends on the state agency providing the rental assistance.

In addition to local rental assistance funds, both IDHS and the Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) will have rental assistance programs. The IHDA website should be operational by May and has the majority of the rental assistance money. IDHS has its own small pool of emergency rental assistance dollars and further details will be provided when available. The technological infrastructure grantees are hoping to incorporate information on rental assistance into their platforms and when information is available, IEJF will ensure it is disseminated to grantees.


Q. What are the income eligibility for client services?

A. Cook County grantees will use 80% of Chicago Area Median Income (AMI) and grantees providing services outside Cook County can use the Illinois 80% AMI standard.

  • Chicago AMI can be found here: 2020_hud_income_limits (chicago.gov)
  • The State of Illinois AMI is below:
    AMI
  • Mediation services do not need to follow income guidelines as many of the cases will be court-appointed and as neutrals, they do not have a client.


Q. Why is there funding provided to Cook County organizations when there is the Cook County Legal Aid for Housing and Debt (CCHLAD) and the Early Resolution Program (ERP)?

A. Funding for organizations that provide services in Cook County took into account both programs in its grant decision-making process.

IEJF took into consideration the need to provide services throughout the State and to have resources available to address cases that could not be handled outside Cook County due to conflicts or other intake criteria. IEJF also took into account the already funded Cook County program through CCHLAD and ERP. Any Cook County applicant for funding will need to serve specific populations or communities that would not easily access the county-wide services or would be best served by a local organization. However, all organizations must commit to referring appropriate housing inquiries into the Cook County program.


Funded Services under FY22 Grant

Q. What services are eligible for funding under the FY22 Eviction Help Illinois Grant Program?

A. Each contract details the funded services under the FY22 grants.

Unless discussed and approved otherwise, funding is to provide legal and mitigation services to Illinois residents from July 1, 2021 through June 30, 2022. Any housing case in which legal services is provided is eligible for funding, as the intent of this program is to keep people stably and safely housed. In addition to eviction, other eligible legal services include subsidized housing cases, failure to pay condominium fees, conditions cases, or negotiating early termination of a lease.

Organizations must be 501 c3 and GATA-certified organizations in good standing in order to be eligible for funding.


Q. How do current grantees treat cases that carry over from FY21 to FY22??

A. Any legal or mediation services provided during the grant period – no matter when the case was originally opened – is eligible for funding.


Q. What will happen if a grantee cannot meet the projections submitted with the grant application?

A. While applicants should make their best efforts to meet projections, funding is provided for staff to provide legal and mediation services, not based solely on case numbers.

IEJF understands that projections are difficult to make, given the many factors that can influence the number of eligible clients, including state and federal eviction moratoriums. This was one of the reasons IEJF does not require legal service projections to be based on the level of service, as that would be too difficult to predict and contingent on external factors. However, grantees are required to report on the level of service provided.

Q. Are outreach efforts funded under this grant?

A. No. There is a separate funding opportunity for outreach efforts.

IDHS has developed a multi-pronged response to the eviction crisis, which includes a statewide outreach effort and PR campaign. This grant funding was specifically to provide eviction-related legal and mediation services. IDHS had also dedicated a separate pool of money for Eviction Mitigation Outreach that is being administered by the Access to Justice Administrators (Westside Justice Center and the Resurrection Project). The application is currently open and due 5/6/21. Visit https://ilaccesstojustice.com/ for more information about the funding opportunity.


Q. Can staff time spent on learning about changes in eviction moratorium and responses in local jurisdictions be funded this grant.

A. Yes. Time spent on internal or external training opportunities for eviction-related skill or strategy development can be funded under this grant.

While this funding is dedicated to the provision of legal and mediation services, skill and strategy development is critical to providing those services effectively. While this time may not be directed to only one case, it is directed to the overall services provided under this grant.


Programmatic Reporting Requirements

Q. How often must reports be submitted to IEJF?

A. Monthly program service reports (in addition to financial invoices discussed below) are required, and a final report is due at the end of the grant period (discussed below).
Each grantee is required to report on progress toward goals each month, as detailed in the grant contracts. Reports – both programmatic and financial – must be submitted via Foundant on the following dates:

  • Tuesday, August 10, 2021 (for July 2021 services and expenditures)
  • Friday, September 10, 2021 (for August 2021 services and expenditures)
  • Friday, October 8, 2021 (for September 2021 services and expenditures)
  • Wednesday, November 10, 2021 (for October 2021 services and expenditures)
  • Friday, December 10, 2021 (for November 2021 services and expenditures)
  • Monday, January 10, 2022 (for December 2021 services and expenditures)
  • Thursday, February 10, 2022 (for January 2022 services and expenditures)
  • Thursday, March 10, 2022 (for February 2022 services and expenditures)
  • Friday, April 8, 2022 (for March 2022 services and expenditures)
  • Tuesday, May 10, 2022 (for April 2022 services and expenditures)
  • Friday, June 10, 2022 (for May 2022 services and expenditures)
  • Friday, July 8, 2022 (for June 2022 services and expenditures)

A detailed final report (including outcomes and demographic information) will be due on or about July 15, 2022. Failure to provide timely reports may jeopardize distribution of grant funds, as well as continued IEJF funding.

Q. What type of information must be included in the monthly programmatic reports?

A. Monthly programmatic reports require numbers on cases opened and level of service during the previous month(s) to account for progress toward projections.

The type of information required in the monthly report is contingent on the projections submitted with the application, grantee funding category, and each organization’s grant contract. Theses output numbers are entered directly into Foundant and there is a space to answer two narrative questions: one on successes, the other on challenges. You will also be required to upload the financial invoice in Foundant each month, as discussed below.

  • Legal Services. Grantees must report the total number of cases opened by level of service each month in the following categories: (1) brief service/advice, (2) representation without litigation (including negotiations or administrative hearings), and (3) limited and extended litigation services (in court representation). IEJF understands that the level of service may change throughout the course of legal representation, but grantees should report monthly on the level of service for which a legal case was opened. A case need not be closed to report – the goal of the monthly reports is to see the number of cases opened and therefore, people accessing legal services.
  • Technology Services. Grantee must report monthly on one or more of the following depending on grant funding and contract: (1) number of telephone consultations; (2) total number of referrals to legal services provided through a telephone hotline; (3) total number of online/SMS intakes; (4) total number of referrals to legal service provided through online/SMS intake; and (5) total number of people accessing online legal information on eviction.
  • Mediation Services. Grantees must report on one or more of the following depending on grant funding and contract: (1) total number of mediation sessions; (2) total number of mediator payment facilitated; (3) total number of mediator training sessions; and (4) total number of mediators trained. For mediation sessions, the case need not be resolved. Similar to legal services, the goal of the monthly reports is to see the number of sessions held during a reporting period.

All legal and mediation service grantees must report monthly on referrals to one another or referrals to non-legal housing support assistance, including: (1) number of referrals to rental assistance programs; (2) number of referrals to housing or financial counselors; and (3) number of referrals to legal or mediation services. If mediation is ordered by the court, that should not be counted as a referral for eviction mediation.

Q. How do current grantees treat cases that carry over from FY21 to FY22?

A. The final report – due July 15th – will include outcomes and client demographic information for all services provided (and funded) during the grant period.

It does not matter when a case was opened to qualify for funding under this grant. The key is services were provided during the relevant time frame. For new grantees, the first month of program service reporting will allow for the accounting of already open cases that will be funded under this grant for services provided in FY22.

Q. What type of information must be included in the final report?

A. The final report – due July 15th – will include outcomes and client demographic information for all services provided (and funded) during the grant period.

IEJF created and provided a Final Program Service Report template with the grant application. This will be sent to all grantees again, as slight adjustments have been made based on grantee feedback.

The goal of this final report is to provide a comprehensive picture of the eviction mitigation services provided with IDHS funding. This provides insight into where in Illinois people are accessing services, what that service delivery system provides people throughout Illinois, and the outcomes of the collective grantee efforts.

Please note: no grantee is required to report identifying case information, such as case number or name. This specific data will only be provided to IEJF for data analysis and reporting and provided in the aggregate to IDHS. The “unique client id” is one created by the grantee to account for duplicated client data and not force consolidation of outcomes when it is not possible for multiple service delivery.
There will most likely be a final IDHS close out process for the grant. Details will be provided when confirmed.

FINAL REPORT: Information & Outcomes for Legal Service Grantees
Age at Time of Intake This allows the age to stays consistent and not change throughout the life of the case.
Gender and Race/Ethnicity If a grantee does not collect all categories as listed by IEJF based on IDHS reporting, only report what you have matched to the categories provided.
Residential Zip Code Only required for Cook County cases, but grantees outside Cook County can choose to report this as well.
Immigrant (yes/no) This is to show reach to this population of Illinois residents, not a client’s immigration status.
Household Size Number of people under 18 and number of people 18 and over; IEJF will accept the grantee’s definition of household.
Status of Case (open/closed) Allows for the accounting of cases that remain open at the close of the grant period.
Level of Service Provided Same as monthly reporting, but tied to a specific, yet unidentified client.
Legal Service Outcomes (for cases reaching conclusion). Outcomes for advice/brief service cases are not required.
  • Eviction Prevented (it does not matter whether it is a negotiated move out or a successful eviction defense case – the key is that an eviction was not entered against the client).
  • Negotiated Move Out Date (this outcome is when an eviction is entered, but the client was provided time to move OR an eviction case was never filed, but negotiations led to an agreement to move out)
  • Eviction Defense Unsuccessful (this outcome is when despite best efforts, an eviction was entered against the client and no additional benefit like time to move was provided).
  • Homelessness Prevention (this is dependent on the client’s situation, but no matter what the actual legal case outcome, choose this outcome when homelessness was prevented as a result of legal intervention).
County of Dispute County the residential property is located in.
Referrals to Other Agencies Same as monthly reporting, but tied to a specific, yet unidentified client
Additional Outcomes
  • Eviction Case Sealed
  • Security Deposit Returned (and value)
  • Repairs Made to Unit

 

FINAL REPORT: Information and Outcomes for Mediation Services

Zip Code Zip code of rental property
Household Size of Rental Household Number of people under 18 and number of people 18 and over.
Status of Case Allows for the accounting of cases that remain open at the close of the grant period
Mediation Services (for cases where mediation reached conclusion)
  • Parties Reached Agreement in Mediation
  • Parties Reached Partial Agreement in Mediation
  • Parties Did Not Reach Agreement in Mediation
Referrals to Other Services Same as monthly reporting, but tied to a specific, but unidentified case)
Mediation Outcomes (for cases where mediation reached conclusion)
  • Eviction Prevented (it does not matter whether it is a negotiated move out or a successful eviction defense case – the key is that an eviction was not entered against the client). Move Out Date Negotiated (this outcome is when an eviction is entered, but the client was provided time to move OR an eviction case was never filed, but negotiations led to an agreement to move out)
  • Rental Assistance Accessed
  • Security Deposit Returned (and value)
  • Repairs Made to Rental Unit


Financial Requirements

Q. For funded organizations, how are financial reports submitted?

A. Each grantee will submit financial reports through Foundant.

Financial reports must be submitted through Foundant when program service reports are due. Grantees will be provided a reporting form with their final approved budget by the IEJF’s accountant, Trina Bauling. Grantees can also upload excel sheets, word documents, and pdf files. It is preferred that they upload all as one large PDF is possible.

Q. When are financial reports due?

A. All financial reports for the prior month’s costs are due by 10th of each month. When the 10th falls on a weekend, the report is due by the 8th.

  • Tuesday, August 10, 2021 (for July 2021 services and expenditures)
  • Friday, September 10, 2021 (for August 2021 services and expenditures)
  • Friday, October 8, 2021 (for September 2021 services and expenditures)
  • Wednesday, November 10, 2021 (for October 2021 services and expenditures)
  • Friday, December 10, 2021 (for November 2021 services and expenditures)
  • Monday, January 10, 2022 (for December 2021 services and expenditures)
  • Thursday, February 10, 2022 (for January 2022 services and expenditures)
  • Thursday, March 10, 2022 (for February 2022 services and expenditures)
  • Friday, April 8, 2022 (for March 2022 services and expenditures)
  • Tuesday, May 10, 2022 (for April 2022 services and expenditures)
  • Friday, June 10, 2022 (for May 2022 services and expenditures)
  • Friday, July 8, 2022 (for June 2022 services and expenditures)


Q. What does the budget narrative require?

A. The budget narrative should include calculations used for computing the budgeted amounts as well as a few sentences for each subcategory (or major cost) which describes the items or services budgeted, their role in the project and the method of allocating those costs.

Include allocation percentages and calculation methods, plus a few sentences that describe the allocation method and the items being allocated. For example, are the benefits budgeted allocated at the same percentages as the salary costs budgeted? Or are the benefits budgeted based as a percentage of salary?


Q. What backup documentation is needed?

A. IDHS states they need the General ledger and receipts over $500.

IEJF found that in reality IDHS also wants payroll reports, copies of contracts and a very detailed general ledger. The IEJF has not been asked to submit timesheets for grantee organizations.

Q. What type of description is needed within the G/L entries?

A. Provide clear G/L descriptions which also document the calculations.

For example, to allocate rent, use a similar description to: “36% of total Jan. and Feb. Rent (1200 for each month x 2 = 2,400 x .36 = $864).” Do Not Use: “To allocate rent for January and Feb”