REP. MONDAIRE JONES JOINS NY DELEGATION IN CALLING ON GOV. HOCHUL TO EXTEND EVICTION MORATORIUM
WASHINGTON, DC — This week, Congressman Mondaire Jones (D-NY) joined Representative Hakeem Jeffries (NY-08) and his colleagues in New York’s Congressional delegation in calling on New York Governor Kathy Hochul to take the necessary actions within her authority to extend the state’s pause on evictions, currently set to expire on August 31, 2021. Following the Supreme Court’s recent decision effectively ending the federal eviction moratorium, extension of the state measure is the only way to protect renters at risk of losing their homes in the face of financial strain due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Given that New York State has the highest share of renter households in the country, it was awarded over $2 billion in Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) funds. According to data from the State Comptroller, only around 10 percent of potentially eligible renters have submitted applications to the program. Extension of the pause on evictions is necessary to ensure the ERAP is available to help hundreds of thousands of renters get up to date on back rent and stay in their homes.
In their letter to Governor Hochul, the lawmakers observed that the expiration of the moratorium is likely to disproportionately harm constituents in minority and underserved communities.
“We remain concerned with the litany of problems regarding the roll out and execution of ERAP in New York. The state needs to address our concerns including the lack of outreach to potentially eligible households and the delays both for processing applications and making payments under the program,” wrote the lawmakers.
Reps. Jones and Jeffries are joined on the letter by Reps. Nydia Velázquez, Ritchie Torres, Carolyn Maloney, Gregory Meeks, Grace Meng, Adriano Espaillat, Yvette Clarke, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Jamaal Bowman, Kathleen Rice and Jerry Nadler.
“With the eviction moratorium set to expire August 31 there is not enough time to fix these issues and get payments out to landlords and tenants,” continued the lawmakers. “Accordingly, an extension of the eviction moratorium is the only way to ensure this program can both work as intended and keep families in their homes. We therefore urge you to take the necessary actions within your power to extend the eviction moratorium.”
The full text of the letter can be found here.
About Mondaire: Mondaire Jones is the 34-year-old Congressman from New York’s 17th District, serving Westchester and Rockland Counties. He serves on the House Judiciary, Education and Labor, and Ethics Committees and is the first openly gay, Black member of Congress. A product of East Ramapo public schools, Mondaire was raised in Section 8 housing and on food stamps in the Village of Spring Valley by a single mother who worked multiple jobs to provide for their family. He later graduated from Stanford University, worked at the Department of Justice during the Obama Administration, and graduated from Harvard Law School. He is a co-founder of the nonprofit Rising Leaders, Inc. and has previously served on the NAACP’s National Board of Directors and on the board of the New York Civil Liberties Union. Most recently, Mondaire worked as a litigator in the Westchester County Law Department. In November, Mondaire was unanimously elected by his colleagues to be the Freshman Representative to Leadership, making him the youngest member of the Democratic House leadership team. In December, Jones was appointed a Deputy Whip of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, and became a Co-Chair of the LGBTQ Equality Caucus. Mondaire was born and raised in Rockland, and resides in Westchester.