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House passes COVID-19 emergency housing plan

SPRINGFIELD, IL – Democratic state lawmakers hope to extend housing security during lame duck session and they’re halfway to reaching that goal.

SB 3066 passed out of the House late Tuesday night after much debate across the aisle.

Recently, Governor J.B. Pritzker extended the eviction moratorium through February 6. Once the moratorium ends, all past rent and mortgage payments will be due. That could add up to a substantial debt for many Illinoisans. Legislators want to make sure anyone struggling has time to save up money to make those payments.

House Democrat Delia Ramirez (D-Chicago) has been fighting for SB 3066 over the past few days during lame duck session. However, she fought for a similar proposal last spring during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Ramirez and progressive Democrats hoped to pass the current proposal with a provision extending the moratorium period through May 2022. She admitted it was hard to remove from the bill before Executive Committee.

“House Amendment 7 still offers a comprehensive approach to addressing the crisis of housing and stability when we are told to stay at home and so many people have no idea if they will have a home to stay in.” said Ramirez.

However, some lawmakers questioned portions of the proposal. House Republican Mark Batinick (R–Oswego) asked Rep. Ramirez to clarify aspects of Amendment seven.

“I’m a little concerned that some of the relief is going to go towards some of the larger commercial style landlords,” said Batinick.

Later Tuesday night, Ramirez asked her colleagues to vote for what is right. She stressed Illinoisans deserve housing security. Her plan passed 77-33.

The bill will now move down the street to the Capitol building where the Senate will begin reviewing the bill. Senate members will have until tomorrow at noon to make a decision.

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