Updated: Oct 5, 2021
October 1, 2021
The Hon. Elizabeth Trosch
Sheriff Garry L. McFadden
The Hon. Elisa Chinn Gary Chief District Court Judge
Dear Judge Trosch, Sheriff McFadden, and Clerk Chinn Gary,
The Greater Charlotte Apartment Association (GCAA), Real Estate and Building Industry Coalition (REBIC), and the National Association of Residential Property Managers - Charlotte Regional Chapter (NARPM) recognize the challenges we all continue to face as a community since the COVID-19 pandemic wreaked havoc on the lives of people all over the world. For over eighteen months the eviction moratoria have prevented not only the eviction of residents who have been unable to make rental payments but have also resulted in courts choosing not to evict for reasons other than nonpayment of rent.
Unfortunately, the eviction moratoria did not resolve the chaos in housing courts, they have actually created confusion and have been interpreted differently among judges and jurisdictions across the nation. The inevitable has come to pass after our leaders in Washington have failed to address the underlying issues which created this situation for over a year and a half. Regardless, the courts must now do their judicial duties, not abrogate them. Our first request is that eviction filings are docketed in accordance with statutory requirements. Our second request is that you resume timely hearings on existing cases and stop the further extension of the moratorium through procedural delay.
Congress put rental assistance in place with the intention of helping residents in need but waited until the end of the eviction moratoria to address issues associated with funding being distributed to state and local governments and agencies which left such governments and agencies wholly unprepared for the sheer number of residents seeking assistance. As each moratorium deadline approached, the narrative by those advocating for its extension warned of an eviction “tsunami.” Because the eviction process takes months, along with the current backlog in the courts created by the moratoria and various court closures, we know that this narrative is not now, nor has it ever been, actually true.
Rental housing providers have shouldered the burden of providing housing and assisting residents in maintaining housing since the beginning of the pandemic and throughout the moratoria, often with little to no recourse against those that have taken advantage of the moratoria protections. Evictions are now being processed predominantly for those who have abused the system, including those who have had the means to pay their rent but chose not to or those residents who have caused significant issues at properties by violating other aspects of their leases while courts across the country have refused to evict them.
Let’s work together as we move forward. Please join the GCAA and other partnering agencies as we plan to convene a roundtable discussion to take proactive steps to address high eviction rates in three identified areas of Charlotte as well as help landlords across Mecklenburg County understand how Mecklenburg County Courts are handling cases.
We are asking once again that the Mecklenburg County Courts administer justice “without favor, denial, or delay” as provided by Article I, Section 18 of the North Carolina Constitution. It is our hope that you will consider this request to move swiftly to docket eviction hearings in order to dispose of accumulated cases and to administer justice without delay and in accordance with North Carolina law.
Kim S. Graham, Executive Director
Greater Charlotte Apartment Association
Rob Nanfelt, Executive Director
Real Estate and Building Industry Coalition
Pamela Greene, 2021 NARPM Charlotte Regional Chapter President
National Association of Residential Property Managers – Charlotte Regional Chapter