New report estimates 150,000 eviction filings in Indiana by January

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INDIANAPOLIS – A new study published by the National Council of State Housing Agencies estimates there will be about 150,000 eviction filings in Indiana by January 2021 after the moratorium set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention expires this year.

This report, produced by STOUT, also says 180,000 – 250,000 households in the Hoosier state are unable to pay rent.

“A big issue that’s come up is housing instability due to COVID and the impending eviction cliff,” said Andrew Bradley, Policy Director for Prosperity Indiana.

Prosperity Indiana is a state-wide association for community economic development. Bradley is worried what this data will mean for Hoosiers at a vulnerable time.

“It’s a massive number if you think about 150,000 households across Indiana that could be evicted in Jan 2021 in the dead of winter,” he said.

Indianapolis launched a rental assistance program in July. The city has allocated $30 million of CARES Act money for rental assistance in Marion County. That funding must be spent by the end of the year. City officials believe more federal assistance is needed for the long term.

“I think there is still time,” said Jeff Bennett, Deputy Mayor of Community Development. “And we are hopeful. We continue to be cautiously optimistic that congress will act, and negotiations could be continuing behind the scenes.”

More than 6,000 households have received help through the program. Bennett said the average assistance that is needed by those households is a little more than $2,000. He expects the city will be able to assist about 15,000 households by the end of December.

“The fact we are still in the midst of the public health crisis means that we are going to have a prolonged need in the community that even our $30 million program is probably insufficient to address long term,” Bennett said.

On Tuesday evening, there was a renewed push for another round of fiscal stimulus. It came hours after President Trump pulled the plug on negotiations.

On Twitter, the President indicated he wants Congress to approve a stand-alone bill that would authorize another round of $1,200 checks.

“They may have missed so many paychecks since the beginning of COVID that even some new stimulus payments wouldn’t be able to fill in the gap,” said Bradley.

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