SEASIDE HEIGHTS, NJ – Governor Phil Murphy on Friday said he is not lifting his moratorium for evictions for hotel and motel owners. Many hotels are now housing families in their place of business for free, who have stopped paying rent as a result on Murphy’s ban placed on evictions as the COVID-19 pandemic began. These hotels, many of which are located along the Jersey Shore which housed seasonal occupants now need to clear their rooms for paying customers.
They can’t, according to Governor Murphy. The only relief hotel and motel owners received was on June 22nd when they were once again permitted to rent their facilities to full occupancy.
Knowing they cannot be evicted, many long term residents of motels and hotels simply stopped paying rent, knowing the owners cannot legally evict them at this time.
“I have nothing to add in terms of lifting the moratorium, and I guess I would just say that this isn’t, as I mentioned, when you compare what we’re going through to the Great Depression or the Civil War, I think everyone has to realize to say this is unprecedented,” Murphy said.
On March 19th, Murphy enacted an “eviction moratorium,” and means that no tenant may be removed from his or her home as a result of an eviction proceeding, with rare exceptions for cases such as when a tenant is violent or endangering other tenants.
This moratorium will last two months after the Governor declares the end of the state of emergency.
Once courts reopened, landlords were able to resume eviction proceedings, but the eviction cannot happen until the moratorium is lifted, according to the executive order.
“The eviction moratorium will last until two months after Governor Murphy declares an end to the COVID-19 health crisis, unless the Governor issues another Executive Order to end it sooner. Local officials will then resume removing tenants who are subject to final court orders of eviction,” the executive order reads.