Gov. Laura Kelly reinstates eviction moratorium for 2 weeks
TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - Governor Laura Kelly announced Monday she is signing an executive order placing a moratorium on evictions for the next two weeks. The governor issued a similar order when the pandemic first began. She set the two-week time frame in hopes that the U.S. Senate will “get its act together” and pass another stimulus bill that could extend a federal moratorium on evictions and re-up federal unemployment benefits.
“No Kansan should be kicked out of their home during this pandemic, that’s just wrong,” said Gov. Kelly. “I know landlords are also impacted by this decision and we are also reviewing a number of options to support landlords while this executive order is in effect.
The governor said if the federal government does not pass a bill within that time, she will further extend the measure, a decision that would have to be approved by the State Finance Council. She said she did not believe counties would be able to amend the order on the local level.
The new executive order would only apply to renters or homeowners affected by COVID-19.
Cases of COVID-19 in Kansas
There have been 1,282 new cases of COVID-19 in Kansas, 2,034 hospitalizations and three new deaths since Friday. Citing the numbers, the governor mentioned a recent visit to Kansas by Dr. Deborah Birx, a member of the White House’s coronavirus taskforce. She said Dr. Birx was here because Kansas is a red zone state or a state with a 10% or more positivity rate for the virus.
“The data don’t lie, wearing masks works,” said the governor echoing Dr. Birx’s sentiment on wearing masks and touting her own mask mandate passed in July.
Gov. Kelly said as students return to school masks, temperature checks and hygiene stations, have been implemented thanks in part to many districts choosing to delay the start of school to after Labor Day.
As of healthcare coverage, the governor said if Medicaid were expanded 150,000 Kansas would be able to receive the necessary treatment for COVID-19 and other health issues.
She also said businesses impacted by COVID-19 will be able to apply for $130 million worth of grants available through the CARES Act. The application process begins on Wednesday (Aug. 19). Businesses can apply at https://www.kansascommerce.gov/covidrelief/.
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