NJ offers help to some smaller landlords whose tenants can’t make rent in the pandemic

Governor Phil Murphy announces extensive social distancing measures to mitigate further spread of COVID-19 on March 16, 2020, in Trenton.
Photo credit Edwin J. Torres/NJ Governor's Office

The effort will be overseen by Lt. Gov. Sheila Oliver.

“We will reimburse property owners whose tenants missed rent payments between April 2020 and July 2020 as a result of COVID-19 as a way of ensuring that their operating costs can be met,” Oliver explained. 

Those costs could include mortgages, taxes, utilities and the like. It’s expected those landlords will pass those benefits down to tenants.

The program will be run through the state Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency and funded by federal CARES Act money.

Meanwhile, Gov. Phil Murphy again lamented the lack of progress in federal talks to create another economic stimulus package, pointing the finger of blame once more at the Republican leader of the U.S. Senate.

“Mitch McConnell may have forgotten that while he gets paid no matter what, millions of taxpayers are hurting and need help yesterday,” the governor told reporters during his regularly scheduled coronavirus briefing in Trenton.

He again called on officials in Washington to not only provide help for the millions of unemployed people, but also additional aid for states feeling the pinch these days.

New Jersey reached a grim milestone on the COVID-19 front Friday, as the number of confirmed fatalities is now at 14,007, with another 1,853 not yet confirmed by lab testing.

That said, statistics compiled over the last week are lower than those of the preceding month, suggesting the state may be regaining control over spread of the virus. 

Daily fatality reports are in the teens or lower statewide. The number of new positive cases has dropped under 400 a day and the rate of transmission is trending lower, now at 1.15 — the lowest in a week.