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Governor to extend Vermont’s homeless hotel program

Published: Oct. 14, 2021 at 4:42 PM EDT
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MONTPELIER, Vt. (WCAX) - Gov. Phil Scott plans to extend the homeless hotel program in Vermont but it’s not clear for how long.

The program was beefed up at the beginning of the pandemic and was due to be scaled back to pre-pandemic levels.

Advocates are now pushing to extend it until the end of the year and say FEMA will cover the costs retroactively.

Members of the governor’s team, lawmakers and advocates are meeting this week to find a consensus.

But advocates say kicking Vermonters out of their rooms will put people into crisis.

“I’ve been in that position in housing and in food. I assure you that nobody is able to know what they’re going to do next when they’re just panicking about what they’re going to do that day. That’s not something you can do in the middle of a crisis,” said Brenda Siegel, an advocate.

The state is giving people $2,500 once they leave hotels to find new housing.

But Siegel says she and other advocates will occupy the Statehouse lawn until the governor fully reinstates the program to pandemic levels.

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