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HUD urges localities to prevent evictions by using grant funds


Fri, Sep 11th 2020 11:00 am

Rental assistance to prevent evictions is an allowable use of $7 billion in HUD CARES Act funds

Consistent with President Donald Trump’s executive order “Fighting the Spread of COVID-19 by Providing Assistance to Renters and Homeowners,” the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has reiterated the Trump administration’s commitment to minimize displacement and evictions resulting from the COVID-19 global pandemic national emergency. HUD is reminding all grantees – states, cities, communities and nonprofits – who received Emergency Solutions Grants (ESG) or Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds that they may use these funds to provide rental assistance or other aid to individuals experiencing financial hardship because of the pandemic and are at risk of being evicted, consistent with applicable laws, regulations and guidance.

“From day one of this pandemic, the administration has done everything in our power to ensure that the American people have a roof over their heads during these trying times,” Secretary Ben Carson said. “Thanks to President Trump’s leadership, we have secured the necessary resources and mechanisms to efficiently and effectively combat this virus.”

“The president and Secretary Carson care deeply about communities disproportionately impacted by the coronavirus and have steadfastly fought this virus from day one. Without this administration’s leadership and the unprecedented $2 trillion CARES Act, poverty levels in our country would have reached over 16%, resulting in an additional 12 million Americans living below the poverty level,” said Lynne Patton, HUD regional administrator for New York and New Jersey. “To date, over $1 billion in funding has been made available to New York and over $230 million to New Jersey to ensure residents of the Empire and Garden states remain in their homes.” 

HUD continues to provide technical assistance to grant recipients to prevent evictions and keep people in their homes throughout the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic. Since the outbreak of COVID-19, the department provided virtual office hours for grantees to ensure relief funds are being used quickly and efficiently. HUD has issued a toolkit for landlords and public housing authorities so they can work with their tenants during this difficult financial time. Additionally, HUD has extended its single-family eviction and foreclosure moratorium for FHA insured single-family homes three times, has promoted the department’s housing counselor services, and issued guidance for lenders.

A press release said, “Homelessness service providers and public housing authorities across the nation have jumped into action to assist those they serve during this unprecedented time. Read more about their stories featured in HUD's Neighbors Helping Neighbors campaign, here. For more information on HUD's response to the novel coronavirus pandemic and the actions the department has taken, please visit HUD.gov/coronavirus.”

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