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Anne Arundel Ramping Up Eviction Prevention Efforts

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Kathy Koch discussing eviction prevention efforts at a virtual press conference Tuesday. Credit: County Executive Steuart Pittman/Facebook Livestream

Anne Arundel County officials are ramping up efforts to prevent evictions as
Maryland’s eviction moratorium is set to expire Aug. 15.

Kathy Koch, the Executive Director of Arundel Community Development Services, said the county has increased outreach to landlords, to ensure they’re aware of rental assistance programs.

They’re also providing funding to more than double Community Legal Services staff for tenants. That will help ensure that attorneys are available to represent tenants in court.

“If you get a notice from the court system, show up, show up, show up,” Koch said at a Tuesday morning press conference. “Show up in that court, and we will make sure that Community Legal Services is there to provide you the assistance that you need.”

Koch said her agency is set to enter a contract with United Way of Central Maryland, which has developed an eviction prevention program that allocates rental assistance funds directly to landlords.

As of Tuesday her department is processing 1,200, and counting, applications for rental assistance.

“We have the funds available. We want to help, we want to get the landlords paid,” she said. “All we need is just a little bit of time.”

Koch suggested that an extension of the CDC moratorium that expired Saturday could have been helpful, but that this doesn’t mean renters won’t get the assistance they need.

A spokesperson for Gov. Larry Hogan’s office said there are no plans for extending the state’s moratorium.

Later Tuesday, multiple outlets reported that the Biden administration is expected to announce new action on the federal level to limit evictions.

Sarah Y. Kim is WYPR’s health and housing reporter. Kim is WYPR's Report for America corps member, and Anthony Brandon Fellow. Kim joined WYPR as a 2020-2021 corps member for Report for America, an initiative of The GroundTruth Project that pairs young journalists with local newsrooms. Now in her second year as an RFA corps member, Kim is based in Baltimore City.