State Democrats proposing bill to extend eviction, foreclosure protections

Regional News

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — The ban on evictions and foreclosures in Pennsylvania could potentially end next month.

When Gov. Wolf extended his disaster declaration in November, it continued the rent and foreclosure safe haven for Pennsylvanians, meaning if he lets it expire on Feb. 23, so will the moratorium.

Democrat lawmakers are proposing a bill that would buy renters and homeowners another two months to get their finances in order before facing eviction or foreclosure.

Sponsors of the bill estimate that there are at least 240,000 Pennsylvanians who are on the cusp of being evicted.

Data also shows if people are put out on the street, COVID-19 cases will surely increase.

Republicans agree, that no one wants to see Pennsylvanians put out by the pandemic, but they think there’s another solution, and it starts with opening up Pennsylvania.

“Give them consistency, give them certainty. Let them live their lives, get their jobs back, help them support their families, and that would do away with a lot of these problems people are facing,” said Jason Gottesman, House Republican spokesperson.

Sen. Vincent Hughes (D-Montgomery, Philadelphia) doesn’t believe it’s that simple.

“This has always been a statewide problem. The pandemic has made it worse, and as I said, the pandemic has pretty much ripped the sheet off of the fragility that exists for most of Pennsylvania’s citizens,” he said.

Pennsylvania is set to receive $852 million in federal funding for housing costs related to the pandemic. Hughes said this money will be used to pay landlords who cannot collect rent.

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