State and federal support for evacuees from Puerto Rico still living in hotels following last year’s devastating hurricanes is due to expire at the end of June, and the Baker administration warned that despite efforts to help families return to Puerto Rico or find stable housing in Massachusetts their options may be limited after June 30.

Gov. Charlie Baker had a memo sent to municipal leaders on Thursday explaining that on May 3, in response to a request from the governor of Puerto Rico, the Federal Emergency Management Agency had granted one final extension making Traditional Shelter Assistance program funding available to evacuees.

In light of the expiring federal shelter supports, the Massachusetts-funded Red Cross housing program will also end on June 30.

“The commonwealth is working diligently on housing search efforts for families and individuals who have chosen to stay in Massachusetts. However, if evacuees currently staying in federal- and state-funded hotels choose not to return home to Puerto Rico and are unsuccessful in finding more stable housing (whether independently or with family and friends) by June 30, other housing options may be limited,” the memo said.

According to the administration, roughly 1,900 households totaling nearly 4,600 people registered for FEMA disaster assistance and are currently living in Massachusetts after evacuating from Puerto Rico in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria. Massachusetts received the third-most evacuees of all 48 continental states.

Of those households, 327 are still living in hotels with FEMA support and another 134 household in hotels are getting assistance through the Massachusetts-Red Cross partnership.

Both FEMA and Massachusetts are providing financial assistance for families that want to return to Puerto Rico, but evacuees who choose to stay and cannot find housing with family or friends will have to meet the same eligibility requirements as other residents after June 30 if they apply for state benefits.

Housing Support for Puerto Rico Evacuees Expiring

by State House News Service time to read: 1 min