What’s in store for California’s Renters?

The eviction moratorium expires on June 30th, 2021 many renters in the state are facing the possibility of eviction. Governor Gavin Newsom signed bill SB-91 in January 2021 or better known as the COVID Tenant Relief Act to provide up to 2.6 billion dollars for assistance to renters and landlords. According to Cnet.org the California Governor has also stated that he planned to add an extra 2 billion dollars for past due utilities and water bills.

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The bill will cover 80% of unpaid would be covered from April 2020-March 31, 2021 the remaining 20% will have to be forgiven by the landlord. If the landlord decided to turn down this offer the tenant could collect 25% and of the rent that is owed, and the remaining will have to be settled by small claims court according to Calmatters.org.

The funds from the SB-91 have been moving at a snail’s pace. The Los Angeles Times reported that only 2% of those who applied received the funds. The article also stated that the first round was distributed by population instead of need leaving many residents left out. Many of these residents being low wage, black and latino residents. Heavy populated areas of the state such as Los Angles did not have enough funds to cover the needs of all its residents. It is estimated that 43% of renter households will be left with no assistance if there are no changes to the distribution.

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 As of today, the eviction moratorium has not been extended there is a push for lawmakers to do so and there is optimism that this will be extended before the deadline. LA County has extended their eviction moratorium until Sept 30th, 2021 stating “we can no longer wait on the state” according to KTLA Even with the extension the flood of evictions to the courts once the rent moratorium ends without state and federal efforts.

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