News Bite

State-Approved Bailout For Delinquent Renters Feeds Other Interests, Too

$50 million for tenants and landlords, $10 million for administration, legal aid groups and social welfare nonprofits

Residential tenants who miss rent payments may be eligible for a government bailout under a law that was signed by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on July 1.

The law directs $60 million in federal coronavirus relief dollars to “rental assistance and eviction diversion,” with $8 million of that going to nonprofit legal aid and social welfare organizations, and $2 million to cover administrative costs.

Lump sum payments will be made to landlords in exchange for allowing tenants to remain, and for forgiving late fees and forgiving up to 10% of the delinquent rent, according to a state press release.

“Tenants whose back rent is not completely covered by the Eviction Diversion Program will be entered into manageable payment plans,” the press release stated.

Senate Bill 690 appropriated $880 million in federal funding for COVID-19 programs. It was sponsored by Sen. Jim Stamas, R-Midland.