Gov. Polis Is Extending His Eviction Order. What’s That Mean For Colorado Renters?

April 29, 2020
Jared Polis Press Conference 200417Jared Polis Press Conference 200417Hart Van Denburg/CPR News
Colorado Gov. Jared Polis updates the news media Friday, April 17, 2020, from the governor's residence at Boettcher Mansion in Denver on the state's handling of the coronavirus outbreak.

The state of Colorado will continue to encourage local officials not to carry out evictions. Gov. Jared Polis said Wednesday that there “will be no evictions for lack of payment for May, just as there have not been for April.”

Polis previously issued an executive order March 20 that said state agencies should work with landlords to identify “any lawful measure” to avoid evictions. District courts have largely stopped accepting evictions, or they have paused the process. Sheriffs and counties have adopted a patchwork of policies regarding their own role, with many, like Denver, Mesa, Weld and Boulder, saying they will not help carry out evictions during the pandemic.

On Wednesday, Polis promised to act before that his order expires Thursday.

“I will be renewing it and strengthening it,” he said at a press conference.

Some renters are still receiving landlord letters threatening evictions. While many tenants are temporarily protected from eviction, skipping a payment is still a very risky bet, unless they reach an agreement with their landlord.

Those who skip rent now may be vulnerable to eviction after the crisis passes. Some progressive groups have tried to rally rent strikes, hoping mass nonpayment will force action by Polis or property owners. However, the governor has said he doesn’t have the legal authority to freeze rent collection.

Are you dealing with eviction in Colorado? Share your experience with reporter Andrew Kenney: akenney@cpr.org.