ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - There are lots of stressed out people in Orange County who tried to apply for financial assistance through the new Orange CARES for residents program on Monday.
The stimulus program is making $36.5 million worth of one-time $1,000 payments to eligible Orange County residents.
But Monday, the application website closed within a minute of taking its first application.
“Hit the link from the Orange County website, where it says 'apply now' and it took me right to that page, where it said they’re down until June 10,” said Art Schwartz, applicant.
Many applicants got this screen, notifying them the application portal is closed until Wednesday.
(UPDATE: Orange County will reopen the individual and family assistance program on Tuesday at 8 a.m.)
“It’s very frustrating. You’re trying to get some money; your government is telling you you got to stay home for three months. How many people can live for three months without any money coming in?” Schwartz said.
FOX 35 viewers reached out to us to investigate what happened.
One of them is a mother of five who has been out of work due to COVID-19 and is two months behind on rent.
“We’re gonna get evicted and that’s a concern in the back of my head every day,” said the woman.
She said she’s grateful for assistance being offered if she can get it.
“Every single hope that I get, it gets taken away from me,” she said.
We took the frustrations to Orange County, which clarified that the website did not crash.
It was always the plan for only 2,000 applications to be processed on Monday.
As announced, the website closes until the next application date.
The county released Monday's timeline of events.
The website went active a few minutes earlier than expected and within one minute, the 2,000 applicant mark was reached.
Monday afternoon, Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings announced that the website would reopen Tuesday and process 20,000 applications.