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Moratorium on COVID-related commercial evictions extended to '21

Kyle Strober, executive director of the Association for

Kyle Strober, executive director of the Association for a Better Long Island, which represents commercial landlords and other large businesses, says the extension delays dealing with problems facing the commercial sector. Credit: Howard Schnapp

Commercial tenants struggling because of COVID-19 got another reprieve after the state extended a moratorium on evictions and foreclosures to next year.

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced Tuesday that he signed an executive order extending protections for businesses and those with commercial mortgages until Jan. 1, the same date on which the residential eviction moratorium expires.

Under the executive order, property owners and mortgage lenders may not file new cases for missed payments, according to Cuomo's office. If courts decide evictions and foreclosures are warranted in pending cases, these decisions cannot be carried out until 2021, Cuomo's office said.

"The health and economic impacts of this pandemic have been devastating, and we are continuing to do everything we can to support people who are suffering," Cuomo said in a statement. The moratorium was set to expire Oct. 20.

The extension was not well received by Kyle Strober, executive director of the Association for a Better Long Island, which represents commercial landlords and other large businesses. Strober said the moratorium does not offer assistance to businesses or their landlords, but rather delays dealing with problems facing the commercial sector.

"While property owners are working with their pandemic affected tenants, there are a small percentage of bad actors taking advantage of the eviction moratorium," Strober said in a statement. "Ultimately, these bad actors hinder the ability of the property owners to provide struggling businesses the flexibility to survive."

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