The Biden administration on Thursday extended the nationwide ban on evictions, but said this is the last time it plans to do so.
Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, extended the eviction moratorium from June 30 until July 31. The CDC said “this is intended to be the final extension of the moratorium.”
The moratorium was last extended in February.
A Biden administration official said the last month would be used for an “all hands on deck” campaign to prevent a wave of evictions. One of the reasons the moratorium was put in place was to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The extension announcement was accompanied by a flurry of administration activity.
The Treasury Department issued new guidance encouraging states and local governments to streamline the distribution of nearly $47 billion in available emergency rental assistance funding.
Associate Attorney General Vanita Gupta released an open letter to state courts around the country encouraging them to do everything possible to prevent or delay evictions.
Gupta’s letter states that “eviction filings are expected to overwhelm courts across the country” unless additional steps are taken.
“Losing one’s home can have catastrophic economic and psychological effects,” Gupta wrote.
“The entire legal community, including the Department of Justice, the bar, and the judiciary, has an obligation to do what it can to ensure that each and every individual has meaningful and equal access to justice before facing such consequences.”
This week, dozens of members of Congress wrote to President Joe Biden and Walensky, calling for the moratorium to be not only extended but also strengthened.
The letter, spearheaded by Democratic Reps. Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, Jimmy Gomez of California and Cori Bush of Missouri, called for an unspecified extension to allow the emergency rental assistance included in the American Rescue Plan to reach tenants.
“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.
The Western Journal has reviewed this Associated Press story and may have altered it prior to publication to ensure that it meets our editorial standards.
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