I meant to circle back to these video clips, but totally ran out of time. Here are the others that might be of interest that I’ll move quickly through but the bulk of the post will be on relocation benefits and discussion on whether and/or how to allocate relocation fees in the case that a tenant is evicted with “no cause” and/or “no fault” evictions.
Once a year rent increases: Council all agreed that tenants shouldn’t have their rents raised more than once a year.
Monetary penalties and enforcement: Council supported this, but the actual design of the monetary penalties were not defined and would be tackled “later.”
Sunset provision: Council agreed to a sunset of the ordinance and annual reviews of the ordinance.
Increase between tenants: This is actually one that the City Council will have made a significant change. And, to give credit where it’s due, Mayor Trish Spencer was actually the one was aggressively pursuing this one, but I’m not quite sure — based on the pushback from the city attorney — if what was being pushed by the City Council was necessarily kosher. Essentially what the City Council, by consensus wants, is upon eviction the landlord can’t charge more to the new tenant than what was collected from the old tenant.
Substantial Rehabilitation and Mass Evictions: Consensus on the requirement of a Capital Improvement Plan prior to eviction, details to be decided in the future. Staff will come back with more details about mass eviction percentages.
Here’s the video on Relocation benefits.:
It took about 19 minutes to get through this item, here’s what happened during that discussion:
- Tony Daysog wanted to create two classes of tenants, one class of tenants that lease from corporations and another class of tenants that rent from “small mom and pop landlords.” Essentially ensuring that tenants that rent from mom and pop operations are less protected.
- In response to Tony Daysog doubling down on his need to protect mom and pop landlords from relocation fees that would only be required if the landlord initiates a no cause/no fault eviction action, Marilyn Ezzy-Ashcraft points out that there is no empirical data that shows that mom and pop landlords are less positioned to afford this cost.
- Jim Oddie also pointed out that small buildings could be owned by corporations like here.
- Frank Matarrese called the formation of this ordinance as “byzantine” and would have rather just gone back to the RRAC model with penalties. Or a case by case mediation model that he suggested earlier in another discussion.
- Tony Daysog spoke up for relocation benefits and a clear expectation dollar wise.
- Tony Daysog wants the landlord to be able to choose between staff’s recommendation of four month’s rent or time because he believes that some landlord’s won’t be able to afford four months’ rent to which Jim Oddie responded that the landlord would then need to make a decision on whether or not to evict, or they would need to find a cause to evict (for cause evictions would no incur a relocation fee).
- This is where Tony Daysog brings up the family member needing to move in even though he understood that it was considered “cause” earlier in the evening.
Here’s what the City Council finally landed on:
- Consensus was reached (3-2) on tying the relocation fee on length of tenancy.
So essentially the only changes from the current process are:
- Relocation fees are a new thing. This is a considerable change from the current process, but it’s unclear how effective this will be (deterrent wise) to slowing down evictions. Given that most folks that are evicted won’t be able to find replacement housing easily even with four months, there won’t be a huge payout to many of these tenants of these relocation fees but instead most tenants will simply have to stay put, continuing to pay rent with a countdown until they will be out of their housing unit.