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Statewide Eviction Assistance Program Launched for Tenants and Landlords

A statewide eviction relief fund was announced Tuesday in Kentucky.

Governor Andy Beshear, in a news release, announced the Healthy at Home Eviction Relief Fund website where people can apply for assistance.

“As we continue to wage this battle against COVID-19, we must make sure renters have a home so they can be Healthy at Home, while also safeguarding landlords against undue financial hardship,” the governor said. “When we come out of this global health crisis, we don’t want Kentuckians facing such insurmountable debt from their housing situation that they are unable to recover. This program will provide some much-needed relief to eligible tenants and property owners during these unprecedented times.”

$15 million of the state's allocation from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act will be available for the following:

  • Eligible landlords can be reimbursed for missed rent payments and receive some advance rent payments to keep tenants in their homes;
  • For eligible tenants, the program pays up to 90 percent of past-due rent and may also cover up to two months of future rent;
  • For approved applications, payments will be made directly to eligible landlords; and
  • Kentuckians may submit applications beginning Tuesday, Sept. 8.

On Friday, Beshear updated his executive order on evictions to reflect the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's moratorium on residential evictions through December 31.

Under the CDC order, a tenant who signs and submits a declaration to his or her landlord about the inability to timely pay rent cannot be evicted. However, the declaration is required in order to prevent an eviction. Like the Governor’s prior executive orders on evictions, the CDC order does not relieve anyone of the obligation to pay rent or comply with any other obligation under a tenancy, lease or similar contract. The CDC order allows landlords to charge and collect fees, penalties and interest for failure to timely pay rent, but prohibits evictions for nonpayment or late payment of such fees, penalties or interest.

-Staff report

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