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Luetkemeyer, Financial Services Republicans Introduce Legislation to Protect Renters from Eviction

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Yesterday, Congressman Blaine Luetkemeyer (MO-03) and House Financial Services Committee Republicans introduced the Renter Protection Act. This legislation protects renters who could face eviction when the national eviction moratorium expires this month by consolidating COVID-related Emergency Rental Assistance programs and quickly disbursing the aid. Because the Biden Administration has severely mismanaged emergency rental assistance, Republicans are taking action to address this failure and ensure American families stay in their homes.

“To date, Congress has allocated $46 billion in Emergency Rental Assistance to ensure Americans could stay in their homes without fear of eviction while our economy rebounded. Unfortunately, the Biden Administration has fumbled the rollout of these emergency funds and the money sits waiting for American renters and landlords who have been affected by the pandemic. This bill will streamline the process and get the federal government out of the way so that states can allocate this money quickly and effectively to those who need it,” said Congressman Luetkemeyer.

The Renter Protection Act of 2021 would reform and simplify the two needlessly complicated Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) programs by consolidating them into one unified program with one set of rules. To do so, the bill:

  • Transfers all remaining March 2021 ERA program funds, which Treasury has still failed to allocate to cities and states, into the original, bipartisan December 2020 ERA program and requires Treasury to disburse the funds within 30 days.
  • Requires that cities and states with any unused ERA money after July 1st use those funds exclusively to pay off the back-rent debts of COVID-impacted eligible households, as Congress originally intended.
  • Reinstates the original December 31, 2021 deadline for cities and states to distribute all ERA funds to COVID-impacted eligible households to make sure this assistance immediately benefits individuals with back-rent due to the pandemic.

These commonsense reforms will ensure that the $46.55 billion in Emergency Rental Assistance money is used to pay off any outstanding back rent and remove the threat of eviction from COVID-impacted renters. The Renter Protection Act of 2021 will also make it easier for cities and states to operate their local ERA programs, so every dollar of rental assistance is used to help eligible families in need and can be accounted for.