Group reintroduces package to help homeowners, renters, landlords

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Local and state Democratic leaders are working to revamp their efforts to help homeowners, renters and landlords through the pandemic.

“One in five renters and one in 10 homeowners with a mortgage are behind on payments. Most of those struggling are renters of color or families with children,” said state Rep. Sara Innomorato.

She said the problem affects nearly half a million households in Pennsylvania. The Democratic Housing Working Group reintroduced the “Safe at Home” package, made up of several bills helping ensure people can stay in their homes and their records won’t be tarnished. It also protects and supports struggling landlords.

“We need to make sure mom-and-pop landlords in our community are able to keep their properties, be good landlords because if we don’t keep that from happening, in addition to serious financial trouble for these landlords, we are opening up the doors to huge out-of-state corporations,” said state Rep. Elizabeth Fiedler.

The package was introduced last summer, but it was not considered in the state House of Representatives.

There’s also a push to extend a state eviction and foreclosure moratorium bill for 60 days after Gov. Tom Wolf ends his disaster declaration. Late last month, Congress passed a federal package to help with rental support. Pennsylvania will see about $852 million of that money.

The new Biden administration announced yesterday it will extend the CDC eviction moratorium until the end of March.

Lawmakers also launched a website where you can fill out a form and share your story of struggling to pay rent or mortgage payments. The forms are sent directly to local and state leaders. CLICK HERE TO ACCESS THE FORM