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Announcement Possible Thursday on Plan to Prevent Evictions

New Hampshire renters could face a wave of evictions once the moratorium ends this summer. (I-Frontier/iStockPhotos)
New Hampshire renters could face a wave of evictions once the moratorium ends this summer. (I-Frontier/iStockPhotos)
June 11, 2020

CONCORD, N.H. -- The Sununu administration is expected to release a plan as soon as Thursday to prevent evictions, and housing advocates are hoping for a robust rental assistance program and more.

The moratorium on evictions during the COVID-19 crisis will end within a few weeks unless it is extended.

Elissa Margolin, director of the advocacy group Housing Action New Hampshire, says there's a lot the state could do with some of the $1.25 billion in CARES Act funding.

"Our coalition has been advocating with the governor's office for emergency relief and recovery, for a rent stabilization program, a homeless shelter adaption program, and foreclosure prevention, and some money to help with production," she states.

The governor's office for Emergency Relief and Recovery has scheduled a press conference at 3 p.m. Thursday. The office reportedly is working on a program to help renters and, by extension, landlords, and provide funds to expand homeless shelters so they can operate safely in case COVID-19 comes roaring back this fall.

Also Thursday, Margolin will be testifying at a hearing on an amendment to House Bill 1129, which would direct some of the CARES Act money for housing.

"We're going to need to help renters and make those landlords whole," she states. "It's a system that needs each other, and I think it makes sense that since the pandemic created financial losses for tenants that we help them at this time."

The $600 a month federal unemployment bonus is set to expire in July. Even prior to the pandemic, more than 50% of New Hampshire renters were paying half of their income or more for housing.

Suzanne Potter, Public News Service - NH