The Wall Street Journal, which first reported the news, said Judge Dabney Friedrich from the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia ruled that federal law does not give the CDC the authority to impose the moratoriums.
Both Austin Mayor Steve Adler and Travis County Judge Andy Brown have orders in place through August 1 that prevent most tenants from being evicted for non-payment of rent. Beginning June 1, landlords in Austin and Travis County will be able to file written notices to evict for tenants who owe more than five months of unpaid rent and have exhausted all options for rent relief.
Neither Brown’s nor Adler’s orders will be affected by the federal ruling, according to representatives from the county and the mayor’s office. Both the city and the county have rental assistance programs funded through federal dollars aimed at helping Austin residents stay in their homes. The county’s $10.7 million program opened to applications April 19, and the city’s $25 million program has been open since March.
According to national reports, the U.S. Department of Justice plans to appeal the May 5 decision.