The Biden administration announced Thursday it will allow a nationwide ban on evictions to expire Saturday, arguing that its hands are tied after the Supreme Court signaled the moratorium would only be extended until the end of the month. The White House said President Biden would have liked to extend the federal eviction moratorium due to spread of the highly contagious delta variant of the coronavirus, the AP reports. Instead, Biden called on "Congress to extend the eviction moratorium to protect such vulnerable renters and their families without delay." Aides to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Sherrod Brown, the chairman of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs, said the two are working on legislation to extend the moratorium. Democrats will try to pass a bill as soon as possible and are urging Republicans not to block it.
The moratorium was put in place last September by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. By the end of March, 6.4 million American households were behind on their rent, according to the Department of Housing and Urban Development. As of July 5, roughly 3.6 million people in the US said they faced eviction in the next two months, according to the Census Bureau's Household Pulse Survey. Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director of the CDC, said in June this would be the last time the moratorium would be extended when she set the deadline for July 31. It was initially put in place to prevent further spread of COVID-19 by people put out on the streets and into shelters. Housing advocates and some lawmakers have called for the moratorium to be extended due to the increase in coronavirus cases and the fact that so little rental assistance has been distributed.
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