Murphy signs bill creating emergency housing assistance program

Emergency housing aid has been expanded for residents most at-risk of becoming homeless.

Gov. Phil Murphy signed into law a compromise version of a bill he’d vetoed in January, saying at the time the state couldn’t afford the high cost.

The new program will make it easier for those struggling to pay rent or in need of emergency shelter to more easily enroll in critical assistance programs.

The law dedicates a maximum of $20 million a year to expand assistance for housing aid.

Murphy also signed into law legislation to tackle the state’s alarming rates of maternal and infant mortality.

It establishes a review committee that will report on death rates each year and determine the economic and social factors that may contribute to maternal deaths to better combat the underlying causes.