Today, Congressman Patrick McHenry (NC-10), the top Republican on the House Financial Services Committee, filed a discharge petition to force consideration of Republicans’ H.R. 3913, the Renter Protection Act, on the House floor. H.R. 3913 will expedite payments from the Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) programs, remove the threat of eviction from COVID-impacted renters, and keep American families in their homes.
“Congress promised relief to renters and property owners impacted by the pandemic,” said Congressman McHenry. “Due to the Biden Administration’s mismanagement and Congressional Democrats’ inaction, American families have been left twisting in the wind. Republicans have been offering a commonsense solution for months—the Renter Protection Act—to fix the ERA programs, make mom-and-pop property owners whole, and end the threat of eviction. This discharge petition will force Congress to finally keep the promise we made to renters and property owners almost one year ago.”
Despite the consistent urging of Republicans, Democrats have failed to fix the Biden Administration’s mismanagement of the ERA programs and deliver real relief to COVID-impacted renters and landlords. While Republicans have been sounding the alarm for months, Committee Democrats finally held the first hearing on the issue today. Ranking Member McHenry’s opening statement from today’s hearing can be viewed by clicking here or on the image below.
Background: The Renter Protection Act of 2021 would reform and simplify the two needlessly complicated Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) programs by consolidating them into one unified program with one set of rules. To do so, the bill:
- Transfers all remaining March 2021 ERA program funds, which Treasury has still failed to allocate to cities and states, into the original, bipartisan December 2020 ERA program and requires Treasury to disburse the funds within 30 days.
- Requires that cities and states with any unused ERA money, use those funds exclusively to pay off the back-rent debts of COVID-impacted eligible households, as Congress originally intended.
- Reinstates the original December 31, 2021 deadline for cities and states to distribute all ERA funds to COVID-impacted eligible households to make sure this assistance immediately benefits individuals with back-rent due to the pandemic.
These commonsense reforms will ensure that the $46.55 billion in Emergency Rental Assistance money is used to pay off any outstanding back rent and remove the threat of eviction from COVID-impacted renters. The Renter Protection Act of 2021 will also make it easier for cities and states to operate their local ERA programs, so every dollar of rental assistance is used to help eligible families in need and can be accounted for.
Committee Republicans are leading the fight to protect America’s renters:
On June 16, 2021, all Committee Republicans introduced H.R. 3913, the Renter Protection Act, to fix the Biden Administration’s mismanagement of the ERA programs, get the money out the door quickly, and keep Americans in their homes.
On June 25, 2021, Republican Leader McHenry and French Hill (AR-02), the top Republican on the Subcommittee on Housing, Community Development, and Insurance, released a statement denouncing the Biden Administration’s shortsighted extension of the eviction moratorium and calling for consideration of Republicans’ Renter Protection Act.
On July 13, 2021, Republican Leader McHenry sent a letter to Chairwoman Maxine Waters (CA-43) demanding that Treasury Secretary Yellen testify alongside Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Fudge to answer for the mismanagement of the ERA programs and calling for the Committee to consider Republicans’ H.R. 3913, the Renter Protection Act, at the next markup.
On August 4, 2021, Republican Leader McHenry sent a letter to Chair Maxine Waters again urging her to convene a hearing with Treasury Secretary Yellen to hold the Administration accountable for its mismanagement of the ERA programs and find a permanent solution to pay off renter’s back rent by considering Republicans’ Renter Protection Act.
On August 6, 2021, Republicans on the House Financial Services Committee and Energy and Commerce Committee, led by Republican Leaders Patrick McHenry and Cathy McMorris-Rodgers (WA-05), sent a letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi (CA-12) demanding she bring the House back to work to find a permanent solution for tenants at risk of eviction by passing Republicans’ Renter Protection Act.
On August 27, 2021, Republican Leader McHenry issued a statement in support of the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down President Biden’s unconstitutional eviction moratorium and again pushed Congress to permanently address the mismanagement of ERA funds by passing Republicans’ Renter Protection Act.
On September 7, 2021, Republican Leader McHenry sent a letter to Chair Waters again demanding that the Committee take up Republicans’ Renter Protection Act to fix the Biden Administration’s mismanagement of the ERA programs and end the threat of eviction for renters financially impacted by the pandemic.