Madden and Schlossberg to introduce Tenant Eviction Mitigation legislation to help renters due to the COVID-19 pandemic
HARRISBURG, June 15 – State Reps. Maureen Madden, D-Monroe, and Mike Schlossberg, D-Lehigh, plan on introducing legislation aimed at helping renters stay in their homes by establishing a Tenant Eviction Mitigation bill package.
Both lawmakers said among the hardships Pennsylvanians are facing across the state due to COVID-19, is the fear of possibly losing their home. It’s one of the most prominent fears, and for this reason they will introduce a bill package to help renters.
“We are on the brink of a housing crisis during the COVID-19 pandemic and we need to do everything we can to keep people in their homes,” Madden said. “Our constituents are undergoing record levels of unemployment and hourly work reductions, and they now have to face the grueling reality of paying rent. While we work to protect our essential workers and our most at-risk people, it is our responsibility to ensure they are safe in their homes.”
“In the aftermath of the Great Recession, several counties in PA—including Lehigh County, took steps to create a mortgage mitigation program,” Schlossberg said. “Courts took steps to protect endangered homeowners and helped to keep people in their homes. This legislation takes a similar approach to protect tenants and also helps landlords work toward a process for securing past-due rents. These are terribly difficult times and the more we can do help landlords and tenants navigate this process, the better we will all be.”
The bill package to help renters by establishing the Tenant Eviction Mitigation Program is as follows:
- Would require landlords to create a payment plan option for tenants who may have lost income due to a statewide emergency like COVID-19.
- Would prohibit landlords from charging late fees on rent payments to tenants with lost income during a statewide emergency.
- Would create a landlord-tenant mediation and counseling program to help resolve issues before an eviction is required.