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Protesters, lawmakers call for Gov. DeSantis to extend moratorium on evictions

Florida

Moratorium set to expire July 1

UPDATE: Governor Ron DeSantis has signed an executive order suspending mortgage foreclosures and evections due to the coronavirus until Aug. 1.

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (Cap News/WFLA) — Gov. Ron DeSantis’ moratorium on evictions and foreclosures is set to expire Wednesday, which means thousands could soon face being removed from their homes.

The moratorium put in place by DeSantis at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic was initially set to expire on June 1. With just hours left before its expiration, Gov. DeSantis signed an executive order extending it to July 1.

A handful of activists gathered outside the governor’s mansion in Tallahassee on Tuesday to call for another extension. The group posted an eviction notice outside.

“We pay Governor DeSantis to be in this house. Why don’t you, like, try to keep us in our house?” Trish Brown with the Florida Housing Justice Alliance asked.

Brown told us she and her family have faced a housing crisis for years.

“Being on your last leg when it comes down to money, having bills crash down on you with no way to breathe,” Brown described.

The Florida Housing Justice Alliance counts as many as 2,600 evictions cued up and ready to start moving through the courts.

The governor was asked during a Tuesday afternoon news conference if he would again be extending the midnight expiration of the eviction moratorium.

He didn’t answer.

DeSantis on Monday touted the $250 million in CARES Act funding.

“Across the state to help families meet housing needs,” said DeSantis.

$145 million in state funds is also being released to help people pay rent.

”The 250 from the CARES Act wasn’t enough. The money from the State Legislature wasn’t enough,” said Lakey Love with the alliance.

Judy Tanzosh became unemployed in March.

If not for help from her 70-year-old mother, she claims she would be out on the street.

“It’s a pretty bad feeling to have to go to your parents and ask them for financial help. It’s kind of embarrassing,” said Tanzosh.

Democrats in the Florida Senate are asking the moratorium be extended another month.

The Florida Apartment Association, which represents landlords big and small, does not favor moratoriums. It asserts that cash assistance for renters and landlords is more equitable for everyone.

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