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California to Pay Tenants’ Back Rent from COVID Pandemic

California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced his state will pay residents’ past due rent that has accrued during the coronavirus pandemic.

Jason Elliott, Newsom’s senior counselor on housing and homelessness, said the back rent can be paid through the state’s allocation of $5.2 billion from congressionally approved assistance packages, The Associated Press reported.

The California Department of Housing and Community Development said just $32 million of $490 million in requests for rental assistance through May 31 has been covered so far, however, AP reported.

Newsom said his proposal will treat landlords fairly after many of them were prohibited from evicting tenants behind in their rent during the pandemic because of the public health emergency.

The governor’s proposal doesn’t settle the issue of whether California will continue to ban evictions for unpaid rent beyond June 30. Additionally, federal eviction protections are set to expire on June 30, too. However, the state has passed its own protections that applied to more people than the federal protections.

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