For Immediate ReleaseJanuary 12, 2021
Ban through June 30 in effect for tenants affected by COVID-19
San Rafael, CA – After implementing strong eviction protections for residents during the during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Marin County Board of Supervisors unanimously passed a resolution January 12 that continues to bar evictions through June for people economically impacted by the coronavirus.
Planners from the Marin County Community Development Agency worked with the Board’s Housing Subcommittee to create language that reinstates a local moratorium first enacted March 24, 2020, when households began to suffer negative financial impacts directly tied to the pandemic. The moratorium was extended four times.
Landlords are now prohibited from evicting a tenant through June 30 if the tenant has an economic hardship that is directly tied to COVID-19.
“We have to do this to keep people housed in Marin,” said Board President Dennis Rodoni. “… I think this gives some certainty to our tenants through the end of June. There are still maybe some other actions that are needed. It’s a moving target, but everyone’s sort of pushing in the same direction, and I expect more good news from the state and federal government in the coming months.”
An earlier local resolution expired on September 30, and the County deferred to the State of California’s Assembly Bill 3088, which provides relief through January 31 for tenants who submit a declaration form and pay 25% of rent owed between September 2020 and January 2021. Under AB 3088, rent that came due between March and August 2020, still due to landlords, was converted to consumer debt and could not be used as the basis for evictions.
By the end of 2020, the Emergency Rental Assistance Program established by the County and the Marin Community Foundation had granted nearly 1,700 tenants with rent assistance payment paid directly to local landlords totaling $3 million. The program was a safety-net fund to assist the most financially vulnerable residents and prevent homelessness. Marin’s severe shortage of affordable rental housing – even under non-pandemic circumstances – leaves many lower-paid workers at high risk for homelessness, and in turn, less equipped to mitigate the risks associated with the virus.
CDA Planning Manager Leelee Thomas said there are approximately 1,500 open inquiries for rental assistance in Marin, with about 1,000 new calls added since re-launching the program on December 17.
“The public health emergency remains fluid, and the State Legislature is considering two bills that would provide more renter protections,” Thomas said. “We will continue to monitor the situation and may come back to the Board with recommended amendments based on new circumstances affecting the stability of renters in Marin.”
Through the COVID-19 Fund of MCF, contributions can be earmarked for emergency rental assistance and will be leveraged for food distribution and specialized services for older adults and people with disabilities.
More documents and information for renters and landlords related to the eviction moratorium can be found on the County’s Renter and Landlord Resources webpage.
Leelee ThomasPlanning ManagerCommunity Development Agency
3501 Civic Center DriveSuite 308San Rafael, CA 94903(415) 473-6697Email: Leelee ThomasAffordable Housing webpage