Oklahoma Co. Eviction Numbers Lower Than Predicted, Surge Expected Soon

Thursday, July 16th 2020, 9:37 pm
By: Clayton Cummins

It was back in late May when News 9 told you the Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office was expecting a surge in evictions because of COVID-19. It turns out that wasn’t the case and the worst may be yet to come.

On May 26, a moratorium placed on evictions expired in the country. The surge once expected now may happen at the end of this month when a federal moratorium expires across the country.

Most evictions dated back before the pandemic started.

“The only evictions that we have been doing are for folks who outright own their properties or have some sort of privately backed mortgage,” said Oklahoma County Sheriff Spokesman, Mark Myers.

It’s thanks to the CARES Act, placing a moratorium on federally funded loans. Concerns are now beginning to grow. On July 24, the moratorium expires.

“We don’t really know what is going to happen, we don’t know if the federal government is going to extend their moratorium on federally backed mortgages or not,” said Myers. “If they don’t, that’s when we expect to see a lot more of these evictions filed.”

In May, only 160 eviction notices were handed down after the 26th. In May 2019, 446 evictions were handed down.

In June 2020, 224 eviction notices were given. Compare that to June last year when that number was 526.

“Our deputies speak with judges and that’s what the judges are even saying, once the federal moratorium is lifted, that is when we will likely see a large amount of these evictions filed by landlords and judgements by judges,” said Myers.

A sign of the time, no doubt. Nobody understands that more than deputies.

“A lot of people think that law enforcement officers are robots, people without emotions but these are folks with emotions as well,” said Myers.

With the CARES Act $47 milliom has been set aside to help. That money hasn’t been spent yet, as officials work out legality issues that will help determine how that money can be spent.