This week, White House American Rescue Plan Coordinator Gene Sperling and Special Assistant to the President for Housing and Urban Policy Erika Poethig, along with other Biden-Harris Administration officials, held virtual listening sessions with groups representing landlords and tenant advocates to discuss state and local disbursement of emergency rental assistance funds and ways to protect renters from eviction.
Administration officials communicated the need for landlords to accept rental assistance before pursuing evictions. They also received feedback on strengths and weaknesses of state and local rental assistance programs as well as ways the Administration can work with governors and mayors to expedite the release of rental assistance funds. Landlords also offered their feedback on how grantees might speed delivery and increase access to rental assistance. In their discussions with tenant advocates, Administration officials also heard about the challenges renters are facing in accessing emergency rental assistance funds. They also shared examples of where evictions are proceeding and ways to promote eviction diversion strategies.
In both meetings, Administration officials reiterated the commitment made by President Biden that his Administration will not rest—nor should state and local governments—until emergency rental assistance dollars reach Americans in need.
The meetings with these groups are part of continued engagement by the Administration to raise awareness among tenants and landlords on available resources and increase the pace of distribution of the billions in emergency rental assistance that is available to state and local governments to prevent evictions and make landlords whole.