Update from the Governor
Following the advice of public health experts, on July 13, Governor Tim Walz extended the COVID-19 peacetime emergency to August 12. Minnesotans’ health and safety are the Governor’s first priority.
As COVID-19 continues to impact a tenant’s ability to pay their rent, the Governor signed an order that strikes a balance between protecting housing stability and public health and acknowledging the reality that some evictions are necessary to protect public safety. Under this Executive Order, housing providers can evict a tenant when the tenant violates a lease by endangering the safety of others, engaging in certain illegal activities or significantly damaging property. Evictions can also proceed if the homeowner or their family member needs to move into the premises or if a writ of recovery was issued prior to March 24.
The order also requires landlords to give residential tenants a seven-day notice of intent to file an eviction to help mitigate the impact upon residential tenants and encourage resolutions without court involvement.
This order will take effect on August 4 at 12 a.m. and remain in effect for the duration of the peacetime emergency or until rescinded.
New Healthcare Option
The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) continues to encourage Minnesotans to get tested for COVID-19 if they feel sick. The MDH announced a new healthcare option that will cover testing for individuals who do not have insurance. Information can be found on their website. The site also has information about programs to help Minnesotans having a hard time paying their healthcare bills during the pandemic.
Child Care Support
Minnesota child care providers can apply for funding to help ensure children’s and staff’s health and safety in their child care settings. The deadline to apply is 5 p.m. on Thursday, July 23.
Food benefits are available to 3 and 4-year-olds in school district-run pre-K programs. Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer (P-EBT) is a temporary food benefit available to Minnesota families with children who would have received free or reduced-price meals if schools were open. Minnesotans must apply by July 31. Apply at https://mn.p-ebt.org/.
Food shelves have seen a 30 percent increase over typical visits each month since the pandemic began.
Information about food assistance resources is available on the state’s food emergency webpage. Minnesotans can fill out a Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) application online at ApplyMN.dhs.mn.gov. For additional food resources, contact the Food Helpline at 1-888-711-1151 or visit Hunger Solutions.
Mortgage Relief Options
Thirty-one Minnesota financial institutions have committed to providing mortgage relief options to customers facing financial hardship caused by COVID-19 for homeowners not covered by the CARES Act.
Following are the relief options:
• Mortgage payment forbearances of up to 90 days to single or multi-family mortgage customers directly impacted by COVID-19. Qualifying customers can begin applying immediately.
• Single-family customers who qualify for forbearance will not be required to make a lump-sum payment at the end of the forbearance plan. Instead, institutions will work with borrowers on repayment options, which may include:
–Allowing customers to add the reduced or missed payments over the lifetime of their loans or
–Extending the maturity of the loan to make up for the missed payments.
• For single-family customers in an active forbearance plan there will be no late fees or negative credit reporting.