The Biden administration extended the nationwide eviction ban on Thursday in efforts to help tenants struggling to make rent payments during the coronavirus pandemic, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Thursday.
CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky extended the evictions moratorium until July 31, one month out from its scheduled June 30 end date, the agency said in a press release. The CDC said Thursday that this was “the final extension of the moratorium,” according to the AP.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki stated that the bans on evictions for renters and mortgage holders were “always intended to be temporary,” the Associated Press reported. She added that President Joe Biden “remains focused on ensuring that Americans who are struggling, through no fault of their own, have an off-ramp once it ends.” (RELATED: Psaki Dodges On Whether Unemployment Benefits Are Slowing COVID Recovery)
The CDC extending the federal eviction moratorium another month – originally set to expire on June 30, it will now be in place until July 31.
“This is intended to be the final extension of the moratorium.”
— Maura Barrett (@MauraBarrettNBC) June 24, 2021
The Biden administration received letters from members of Congress this week calling for the moratorium to be extended, ensuring that the nearly $47 billion in emergency rental assistance included in the American Rescue Plan could be received by tenants, the AP reported. (RELATED: CDC Extends Trump Admin’s Coronavirus Eviction Moratorium, Despite 2 Judges Ruling It Unconstitutional)
In a letter, Democratic Reps. Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, Jimmy Gomez of California and Cori Bush of Missouri wrote that ending the assistance too abruptly would disproportionately hurt some of the minority communities that were hit hardest by the virus, according to the AP.
“The impact of the federal moratorium cannot be understated, and the need to strengthen and extend it is an urgent matter of health, racial, and economic justice,” the letter said.
Diane Yentel, president of the National Low Income Housing Coalition, stated that the eviction ban is “the right thing to do — morally, fiscally, politically, and as a continued public health measure,” according to the AP.
The extension has been met with opposition and even court challenges from landlords, who argue that the Biden administration should focus on quickly distributing rental assistance, the AP reported.
“With each passing month, we are at risk of losing an ever-increasing amount of rental housing – jeopardizing the availability of safe, sustainable and affordable housing for all Americans,” Bob Pinnegar, the president and CEO of the National Apartment Association, said in an email interview with the AP. “The mounting housing affordability crisis is quickly becoming a housing affordability disaster fueled by flawed eviction moratoriums, which leave renters with insurmountable debt and housing providers holding the bag.”
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