The federal moratorium on evictions concludes at the end of June after over a year’s worth of eviction protection.
However, the Borough of State College will offer two options for residents to avoid eviction after the moratorium ends on June 30th.
Doug Shontz, the Assistant to the Borough Manager, says one option is mediation.
“We’ve partnered with the Center for Alternatives in Community Justice to offer a certified mediator for free to avoid costly litigation, and assist both the landlord and tenant with coming to a solution to ensure that you’re able to either set up a payment plan or work out some other way to work through those issues and avoid eviction,”
There is an option for direct financial assistance, though to qualify for it, you must not have received any subsidized housing from other sources, as well as having paid all rent or mortgage on time, and been no more than 30 days behind utility payments, when the moratorium began in March of 2020.
“The other (option) that we have is mortgage, rent and utility bill assistance. This is for mortgage holders and renters that are maybe behind on some utilities, maybe behind on payments,” he explained. “We can offer $2,000 per month for up to three consecutive months for mortgage and utility payments, and renters may receive up to $1,200 per month towards rent and utilities for 3-6 consecutive months or more.”
At the end of the day, Shontz says the borough doesn’t want to see anyone lose their homes.
“We don’t want to see anyone losing their house, and we want to offer whatever support that we possibly can to, to keep those people housed, especially with the adverse and unique conditions of the covid-19 pandemic, as we’ve seen people throughout the country, not just here locally, that have struggled and luckily, the municipality here in State College, we do have the ability to offer them help.”
The contact number for the mediation service is (814) 234-1059 and for mortgage, rent and utility bill assistance, call (814) 234-7165.