Republicans on the House Financial Services Committee want Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen to testify before the panel about why billions in federal aid has failed to reach the majority of tenants and has created billions in landlord dues.
“Many of us also believe that Secretary Yellen has failed to take responsibility for the program’s failures and shortcomings, disregarding requests by this committee and others for opportunities to address these questions, and giving them statutory obligations.” Bill Huizenga (R-Mich.) said during a hearing Friday.
The Treasury Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
According to data released by the Treasury Department in late July, about 90 percent of federal rental money allocated to state and local governments has not been distributed, which translates into about $40 billion not reaching the recipient.
Huizenga and his colleagues say that the law introduced by Speaker Maxine Waters (D-Calif.), while good in its intent, could negatively affect landlords and create more red-tapism for tenants seeking rental assistance. Can do.
“And, frankly, many of us believe that instead of fixing the program, the proposed changes would create even more bureaucracy, add new burdens, and scare away more landlords, the low-income households affected by COVID. Will take away money from, and take away security. To combat fraud,” Huizenga said.
However, Waters said his legislation would help expedite the distribution of rental assistance.
“I am deeply concerned about the data that state and local governments have used only 11 percent of the $46.6 billion in emergency rental assistance funding available. There is no question that the money reaches landlords and renters quickly or widely. Not reaching,” Waters said at the hearing on Friday.
Waters introduced the law in an effort to expedite payments to tenants and landlords. Waters said in a Dear Aide letter that her legislation—which will be placed before the committee for a vote on September 13—requires grantees to “accept a tenant’s self-verification and provide assistance directly to tenants in certain circumstances.” will be required.”
Waters also said that his bill would allow landlords to “directly apply for return rent after giving notice to their tenants that they intend to apply” and the Treasury Department and “to grantors to potential tenants and landlords.” directs them to conduct additional outreach.”
Both Democrats and Republican lawmakers have called on states, municipalities and local agencies to speed up the distribution of aid to prevent thousands of people from being evicted. Friday’s hearing of the Finance Services Committee was an attempt by lawmakers to find out how they can streamline the disbursement process going forward.
Patrick McHenry (RN.C.), ranking member of the committee, said he has filed a discharge petition so that his bill, HR 3913, the Renter Protection Act, can come to the House floor for a vote because the bill would otherwise be blocked by Democrats. .
“Due to the mismanagement of the Biden administration and the inaction of congressional Democrats, American families have been winded. Republicans have been offering a commonsense solution for months—the Renter Protection Act—to fix ERA (emergency rental assistance) programs, make mom-and-pop property owners whole, and eliminate the threat of eviction,” McHenry said. said in a press statement.
McHenry’s bill would require the Treasury to distribute all remaining ERA program funds within 30 days of the bill becoming law; Require that all unused ERA funds be used for back-rents by those affected by the pandemic, and reinstate the December 31, 2021 deadline for cities and states to distribute all ERA funds.
The CEO of Winn Companies, Gerald Winn, laid out four points that will help ease the financial burden that landlords are facing due to unpaid rent money.
“Consent to signature by the tenant will be communicated as consent, it will be the bulk applications that landlords are able to submit, and which are mandated to be approved by the ERAP administrators, and not merely to encourage, a combination bureaucracy.” Two programs for cutting,” Winn told the committee at Friday’s hearing.
Winn continued, “And I would actually say the fourth, would be to make sure that when a unit becomes vacant, that unit is still eligible for rental assistance because that’s where a lot of the outstanding crime is.” Huh.”
This News Originally From – The Epoch Times