A group of landlords is suing to toss out Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s residential eviction ban, arguing that the temporary order has jeopardized their businesses and livelihoods.
The property owners said the freeze “ties the hands of housing providers to enforce our lease agreements,” according to Crain’s. The Illinois Rental Property Owners Association, which represents suburban and downstate landlords, said it supports the effort.
Pritzker imposed the ban in late March as the coronavirus was exploding, and with nonessential businesses shuttered and the state in lockdown. He has since extended the measure as residents lost jobs and suffered under the weight of those stay-at-home orders.
The governor, who mapped out a five-phase return to business for the state in early May — Chicago just entered into Phase 4 to align with the rest of Illinois — said the order would end soon. He said a new program, starting Aug. 1, would include $150 million in grants and as much as $5,000 to residents to pay their rent, Crain’s reported.
But in a statement, the Illinois Property Owners Association said the governor’s new plan doesn’t start soon enough, especially for small property owners. The group says that one of its landlords who filed the suit has a tenant using his apartment as a hotel, according to Crain’s.
The property owners association acknowledged that over 90 percent of renters statewide are current on their payments, the report noted. It was unclear whether Chicago could rescind the eviction ban without the governor’s approval. [Crain’s] — Alexi Friedman