© Reuters. File photo: On June 20, 2021, a “rental” sign is displayed in front of an apartment building in Arlington, Virginia, USA. REUTERS/Will Dunham
Authors: David Shepardson and Trevor Hennicart
WASHINGTON (Reuters)-The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Tuesday issued a new 60-day moratorium on residential evictions in areas with high COVID-19 infection rates, on the grounds that it rejected earlier pushes , Delta variants are raging. White House.
The order applies to approximately 80% of U.S. counties that have a high or very high rate of community transmission of COVID-19 and cover approximately 90% of the U.S. population. The CDC stated that if it finds an increase in COVID-19 cases, it will expand the scope of protection to other counties.
CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said in a statement: “The emergence of the Delta variant has led to a rapid acceleration in community transmission in the United States, putting more Americans at greater risk, especially if they are not vaccinated. Vaccines.” “In order to keep people at home and away from gathering places where COVID-19 is spreading, this ban is the right thing to do.”
According to survey data cited by the CDC, 6.9 million renters were in arrears in rent in June and said they may not take large-scale evictions.
The CDC’s new order will protect millions of renters from eviction, but it is slightly more restrictive than the nationwide ban that expires at midnight on Saturday and will almost certainly face legal challenges.
On Sunday, the CDC rejected President Joe Biden’s request for a new pandemic-related moratorium on the grounds that a recent Supreme Court decision lacked legal authority.
Biden had urged an extension to allow Congress to approve the unused funds of more than $40 billion used to help pay unpaid rents to be distributed to renters and landlords, and to keep people at home.
According to a study by the Aspen Institute and the COVID-19 Eviction Defense Project, more than 15 million of the 6.5 million American households currently default on rent, and they owe more than $20 billion to their landlords.
Last week, the National Condominium Association, which has 82,600 members and manages more than 9.7 million rental units, sued the US government for billions of dollars in unpaid rents due to payment moratoriums.
The organization said the new moratorium on evictions “is an unfunded government authorization that forces housing providers to provide expensive services without compensation and imposes insurmountable debt on renters.”
An opinion of the Supreme Court in June indicated that legislative approval is required to extend the moratorium. It is not clear whether the court will review the new and more limited suspension in a different way.
Biden admitted on Tuesday that there are legal risks in advancing the new moratorium, but said it may give renters some “extra time” as the issue enters court.
The CDC suspension order was implemented in September 2020 to prevent millions of people from being forced to leave their homes due to unpaid rents during the pandemic. It was extended for another 30 days in June, when officials said it would be the last extension.
However, as COVID-19 interest rates climbed, some House Democrats led by Representative Corey Bush staged protests outside the U.S. Capitol, putting pressure on the government to change directions and protect renters at risk. By.
The new ban will last until October 3.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, both Democrats, urged the reinstatement of the ban after Congress was unable to do so.
Pelosi said in a statement: “This new suspension order will provide time for the flow of funds allocated by Congress because it will help prevent the spread of the virus worsened by the Delta variant and protect families and landlords.”
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said that Biden also called on state and local governments to extend or implement the deportation ban for at least the next two months.
Some states, such as New York and California, have extended their state deportation bans beyond July 31.