Evictions in Maricopa County reach highest level since beginning of pandemic

The Maricopa County Justice Courts released preliminary data showing that eviction filings in Arizona’s largest county last month reached their highest level in almost two years.

Court spokesman Scott Davis said Feb. 1 that January was the first time since February 2020 that more than 5,000 eviction filings had been recorded in one month in Maricopa County, which is home to Phoenix and sees the bulk of the lockouts statewide.

Davis said the 5,213 filings registered last month was about 85% of normal for January.

Eviction filings in Maricopa County slowed considerably during the coronavirus pandemic, but they have crept back up since a federal moratorium on lockouts ended in late August.

The temporary ban by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had been imposed to protect tenants struggling to pay rent amid the economic disruption of the pandemic.

Emergency rental assistance funds from the federal government have been credited with preventing a tsunami of evictions since the ban ended.

The U.S. Treasury Department projected in late 2021 that approximately $25-30 billion of two tranches of the emergency aid would be spent or obligated across the country by year’s end.

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