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Boise, Housing Authority continued to file some evictions during moratorium

An eviction moratorium remains in effect nationwide, but some evictions at the City of Boise and the Boise City Ada County Housing Authority continued. 

Since the U.S. Centers for Disease Control issued an order to stop evictions for residents impacted financially by COVID-19, the City of Boise filed 8 evictions and the BCACHA filed 2. Of those, only some resulted in the removal of tenants at the order of the court. The moratorium took effect on September 4, 2020 and expires at the end of this month.

Removals not related to rent

Boise spokesman Seth Ogilvie said evictions were only filed against tenants who either could not be contacted to be connected for services or they fell outside of the protections of the moratorium. The CDC’s order only protects people financially impacted by the pandemic and filed proper paperwork, not those who violating their lease or causing other disturbances. 

Ogilive said the city tried to contact tenants behind on their rent and get them connected with eviction prevention nonprofit Jesse Tree, but were unsuccessful. Another potential situation where the city could file an eviction is if a tenant went to prison and was unable to be contacted or pay their rent. 

[Jesse Tree: Evictions continue in Treasure Valley despite federal moratorium]

“They may have an inability to pay, but we were unable to contact them and get them in touch with services and we couldn’t get them lined up with the stuff or they wouldn’t return phone calls,” Ogilvie said. “It sounds like most of these were the kind of people endangering themselves or other tenants type of situations.”

The City of Boise is unique because it owns operates over 200 units of its own affordable housing, which ranges from single-family homes and apartment complexes throughout the city.

Fewer evictions from Housing Authority

An analysis of eviction data by BoiseDev found 12 eviction filings from the City of Boise during 2020, 4 of which resulted in removals. Of those 12 filings, only 3 occurred after the moratorium took effect and they were all removed for reasons other than nonpayment. Boise also filed 5 evictions from the start of 2021 through March 10.

One of the filings ended with tenants being removed from the unit by the court because they were in jail, Ogilvie said. Two other tenants left voluntarily and two were able to work out a deal with the city to stay.

BCACHA filed only two evictions in 2020, with only one coming in after the moratorium took effect. BCACHA’s Public Housing Manager Donna DeThorne said one tenant was removed for “serious lease violations that put all other residents in the building in harm’s way.” The eviction process for this tenant took roughly 8 months.

The hearing scheduled for 2021 was originally filed in 2020 for “serious lease violations” and is still pending.

Prior to the pandemic, the City of Boise filed evictions at higher rates. In 2019, the city filed 60 evictions, which resulted in the removal of 6 tenants. BCACHA filed two evictions in 2019, but only one household was removed after they did not respond to the filing or show up to court. The other case was settled with the help of payment from Jesse Tree and an agreement that the tenant no longer let unauthorized guests live with them. 

Margaret Carmel - BoiseDev senior reporter
Margaret Carmel is a BoiseDev reporter focused on the City of Boise, housing, homelessness and growth. Contact her at [email protected] or by phone at (757)705-8066.

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