The ordinance will, in the opinion of City Attorney John Kenny, “give the individual a formidable defense to submit to the courts if someone tries to take actions against them.”

The City of Mount Shasta held a special meeting on Tuesday, March 31 to discuss an emergency ordinance regarding the prohibition of evictions in the city arising from income loss or substantial medical expenses related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The council voted unanimously to approve the addition of the new chapter with four votes. The decision was unanimous, although mayor pro-tem Paul Engstrom was absent.

According to the ordinance, “council has determined that it is appropriate to temporarily prohibit evictions through May 31, 2020 for any tenant (residential or commercial) who can demonstrate that they are being evicted for the failure to pay rent or make other required payments, and that such failure is a direct impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.”

The ordinance does not apply to city utility payments, but the city is and has been offering opportunities for payment plans to assist those in need.

According to City Manager Bruce Pope, the ordinance falls in line with the Governor’s executive order for the state, which gave local jurisdictions the authority to suspend the evictions of tenants if related to COVID-19.

The ordinance will, in the opinion of City Attorney John Kenny, “give the individual a formidable defense to submit to the courts if someone tries to take actions against them.”

Those who are facing evictions from loss of funds will need to provide property owners and homeowners with proof of substantial financial loss related to COVID-19. Reasons include job loss, layoff, reduction in work hours, substantial out-of-pocket medical expenses related to the pandemic, business or store closures, needing to miss work to care for children, or to care for a family member affected by the pandemic.

For those with questions regarding qualifications and how to proceed, should call Mount Shasta City Hall at (530) 926-7510, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.