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Oakland Moves Toward Ending Rent Control Exemption

An exemption that frees landlords from rent control is on the way out after the City Council told staff to draft an ordinance ending the practice. Previously, landlords could opt out of rent control if they could show they had made substantial repairs to the property. But affordable housing activists have called it a loophole [...]

2018-09-21T15:48:35-07:00September 21st, 2018|Advocacy, Local Updates|

California’s “Yimbys”

"Zoning used to be a total snooze. Arguments about building heights and density were the eye-glazing preserve of planning wonks and people whose next-door neighbors were contemplating two-story additions. In 2018, zoning got sexy. The catalyst for the makeover was the fight over Senate Bill 827, introduced in the California legislature by San Francisco’s [...]

2018-09-21T09:21:37-07:00September 21st, 2018|Advocacy, Local Updates|

Commercial Rent Control’s Fundamental Flaws

In the late 1980s Ruth Messinger, who was then on the New York City Council, was pushing a proposal to impose rent controls on commercial space to save small businesses from being pushed out by soaring rents. I called her "the most dangerous woman in New York" in a Crain's editorial opposing her plan. I think my [...]

2018-09-20T15:42:49-07:00September 20th, 2018|Advocacy, Local Updates|

Proposition 10: Should California Expand Rent Control

"Almost half of California’s population–17 million people–are renters. Many of them spend more than half of their income on rent, plunging many full-time workers into poverty. The consequences of California’s skyrocketing rents are dire and unsustainable. People jam the freeways, commuting long distances into cities they can no longer afford. Many Californians, including children, live [...]

2018-09-13T12:10:05-07:00September 13th, 2018|Advocacy, Local Updates|

Opponents Worry Prop 10 Could Worsen Housing Crisis

"Supporters of rent control through measures like Prop 10 uphold it as a solution to California’s current housing crisis but opponents worry that it could worsen the housing crisis. If passed, Prop. 10 would repeal the restrictions of the Costa-Hawkins Actand allow local governments to enact more comprehensive rent control measures, including tenant-to-tenant rent control. The [...]

2018-09-11T10:56:38-07:00September 11th, 2018|Advocacy, Local Updates, National Updates|

California Initiative Process is Out of Control

"For Evan Low, a Democratic member of the state Assembly, the “aha moment” about the initiative process came when he was solicited by a petition gatherer outside a Sunnyvale Safeway. Low had just left the gym and, wearing a baseball cap, looked like anything but a state legislator. “Do you want to take away the [...]

2018-09-10T11:27:03-07:00September 10th, 2018|Advocacy, Local Updates|

Restrictive Rent Control Does Not Work

“Restrictive rent control does not work,” Leslie Hope stated definitively. “Look at Santa Monica, West Hollywood, even San Francisco or New York City…. Rent control has not had the desired effect of keeping rental prices down. Those areas are the most expensive places to live in the country!” When asked what she would do [...]

2018-09-10T08:24:50-07:00September 10th, 2018|Advocacy, Local Updates, National Updates|

Supervisors President Malia Cohen Contradicts Herself on Support of Prop. 10

"In her dual role as district supervisor and a candidate for a state board, San Francisco Board of Supervisors President Malia Cohen has taken conflicting positions on a November ballot measure that would repeal a statewide rent-control law. Cohen voted against a resolution at Tuesday’s Board of Supervisors meeting to support Proposition 10, which would overturn [...]

2018-09-07T10:11:39-07:00September 7th, 2018|Advocacy, Local Updates, National Updates|

Wall Street Already Jittery About Possible Expansion of Rent Control in California

"The mere possibility that California’s ban on rent control could be repealed is making Wall Street investors and landlords jittery. Earlier this month, analysts from SunTrust downgraded Equity Residential(NYSE: EQR) from "buy" to "hold" based in part on Proposition 10, a California ballot initiative that would give cities more leeway to adopt rent new control policies. [...]

2018-08-30T10:42:13-07:00August 30th, 2018|Advocacy, Local Updates, National Updates|

Affordable Housing Shortage Blamed for First Homeless Increase in U.S. Since 2010

"The number of homeless people in the U.S. has increased in the past year — the first upward trend in the population since 2010 — which is blamed largely on rising rents and lack of affordable housing especially on the West Coast. Seven years ago, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development count identified [...]

2018-08-30T10:26:45-07:00August 30th, 2018|Advocacy, Local Updates, National Updates|