Gov. DeSantis open to blocking evictions during COVID-19 crisis

Bonita Springs. Google Earth

Gov. Ron DeSantis said Thursday that he favors a moratorium on evictions to help Floridians who can’t pay the rent because the COVID-19 pandemic has forced them out of their jobs.

“I need to see what my authority would be, how it would work,” the governor said during a news conference in Tallahassee.

“If we’re telling somebody that if you’re sick don’t go into work, and then they stay home and then something happens with their business and they get laid off and then they can’t make the rent payment, those are extraordinary circumstances,” he said

“I would be supportive of figuring out what I can do.”

Additionally, he’s looking into whether he can get around some of the stringent qualifications for unemployment assistance in Florida. “It’s such a dislocation that I think I can probably waive some of that.”

The state also will look into emergency unemployment assistance available through the Federal Emergency Management Agency, he said. DeSantis had already announced a $50 million bridge loan program for small business.

Michael Moline
Michael Moline has covered politics and the legal system for more than 30 years. He is a former managing editor of the San Francisco Daily Journal and former assistant managing editor of The National Law Journal. He began his career covering the Florida Capitol for United Press International. More recently, he wrote for Florida Politics.