SAN JOSE (CBS SF) – As the number of coronavirus cases continues to rise, Mayor Sam Liccardo of San Jose is seeking to prevent evictions of people who have lost wages due to the outbreak.

Liccardo announced his proposal for a 30-day eviction moratorium at a briefing on Friday, citing “considerable economic impacts” due to the spread of COVID-19.

“We know that one school has already shut down, we expect there may be others in the days ahead. And there are going to be a lot of parents that are going to need to stay home with their kids and they will not all be earning paychecks while they are home,” Liccardo said. “We know that it’s going to be a struggle for a lot of families.”

The mayor went on to say in a written statement, “We must avoid the creation of a greater public health emergency that would result from subjecting thousands more families to homelessness, and we must protect our residents from the fear of potential eviction resulting from economic dislocation.”

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As of Friday afternoon, there at least 20 confirmed coronavirus cases in Santa Clara County, the most in the state. Meanwhile, county health officials have urged tech companies to cancel non-essential travel, along with the cancellation of mass gatherings and other large community events for the time being.

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Under the proposal, renters would have to show they suffered a “substantial loss” of income from the outbreak due to job loss, reduction of hours or needing to miss work to care for a sick child. Renters would need to notify their landlords on or before the day their rent is due.

To ensure landlords are not unduly burdened, Liccardo also called on the city to join the Apartment Association to advocate for temporary relief for unpaid landlords from costs such as property taxes, utility charges and foreclosure.

While the mayor’s proposal calls for a 30-day moratorium, it could be extended by the City Council.

Liccardo plans to introduce the resolution at Tuesday night’s council meeting.

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