OSCEOLA COUNTY, Fla. – Osceola County leaders are adding a courthouse liaison for the county’s eviction and foreclosure diversion program as 1,643 evictions have already been filed with the court.
The announcement was made during a news conference Friday hosted by Osceola County chair Brandon Arrington and U.S. Rep. Darren Soto.
The addition comes as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a new, more limited eviction moratorium which puts a pause on evictions in counties with “substantial and high levels” of COVID-19 transmission, which includes Osceola County.
The new eviction moratorium is set to expire on Oct. 2, however, Soto pointed out that the moratorium is expected to face challenges in the U.S. Supreme Court.
“It could get struck down well before that,” Soto said.
Soto described the courthouse liaison as a “last lifeline.”
“For folks who are facing eviction hearings, the liaison can provide key program paperwork to the parties and is available to discuss general eligibility and payment information,” he said. “I encourage our local judges to work with the liaison to try and reach a settlement among the parties, encourage tenants and landlords to work it out. The tenants, get to keep their homes, the landlords get paid. And in Central Florida we avoid families being kicked out in the streets.”
Soto said landlords can receive 12 months or more in back rent. He added that $15 million was allocated by the county for the rental and foreclosure diversion program and that the “vast majority of funds are still available.”
The liaison will be available at the courthouse on Mondays, Wednesdays and Friday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Osceola County residents can also call 407-742-8414 or via email at email@example.com.