Legislator Proposes California Law to Protect Renters from Becoming Homeless

Sen. Durazo’s SB 567 would boost safeguards for renters under the Tenant Protection Act of 2019

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Hoping to build on California’s Tenant Protection Act of 2019, a state lawmaker from Los Angeles is working on a bill to prevent even more tenants from falling into homelessness in a state that continues to rank first in the number of unhoused people.

Sen. María Elena Durazo (D-Los Angeles) on Friday, March 10, kicked off a campaign to promote Senate Bill 567, also known as the Homelessness Prevention Act, which aims to further protect tenants from unjust evictions and excessive rent hikes.

Inflation, combined with the end of COVID-19 pandemic-related eviction protections, have put many renters at risk of not being able to pay their rent and losing their homes, backers of SB 567 say.

“This is an urgent humanitarian crisis,” Durazo said during a news conference at the Aliso-Pico Recreation Center in Boyle Heights. “As we drive around Los Angeles, we see tents under the freeways, on the sidewalks and the storefronts. It’s become part of the city.”

Details of Durazo’s proposed legislation are being finalized, so a text of the bill is not yet available.

But in an interview after the news conference, the senator said she wants to further lower the cap that landlords can raise rent by, though what that number will be is still being ironed out. Under the existing Tenant Protection Act, rent hikes are capped at either 5% plus the local inflation rate, or 10%, whichever amount is lower.

“We’re open to something that’s reasonable, but clearly 10%, in this day and age with inflation, is far too much, and it’s a principal reason why people can’t pay and they end up on the streets,” Durazo said. “Even with the jobs that they have, they cannot afford to pay these kinds of 10% increases every year.”

She also wants to extend protections to tenants who are renting mobile homes or single-family homes.

In Los Angeles, the city council recently adopted additional tenant protections, including for the renters of single-family homes.

Supporters of SB 567 cite a 2020 study by the U.S. Government Accountability Office which found that a median rent increase of $100 resulted in a 9% increase in homelessness nationwide.

California is home to more than 160,000 unhoused residents.

“This is immoral – the idea that in the richest subnational economy in the world, that we have over 160,000 people sleeping every day on the street,” said Christina Livingston, executive director of the Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment.

Proponents of Durazo’s bill say SB 567 would close loopholes to prevent no-fault evictions, expand the pool of renters with tenant protections, limit annual rent increases, and allow for accountability and enforcement.

Joseph Tomás McKellar, executive director of PICO California, a sponsor of the bill, said one family is evicted every minute in California. In L.A. County, one person is evicted every nine minutes, he said, adding that most of them are people of color and immigrants.

Click here to read the full article in the OC Register

Comments

  1. Gregory Farris says

    Sen. Durazo’s bill will not solve the shortage of housing. I owned two rental homes, not anymore. I also moved out of California, and away from the mess is has become.

  2. Marxism at it’s best.

    • hals schwartz says

      Its always the landlord. The scum, trash, dopers, criminals, felons have every break. Occasionally an indigent or veteral slips thru the cracks but it is rare. As long as Gov Gruesom keeps throwing money at “homelessness” Kalifornia will keep getting more of it. Let them all live on empty CalTrans properties. Then when they are plowed or the weeds burned off, things will clear up. Alternate 2 spray them with the “skunk oil” developed by the Jews in Israel then at least they will head in for a shower.

  3. One of the essentials of America (and around the world) today is the same as it has been for a very long while. That is that changing conditions results in forcing people to move to areas where they can survive. Now, in California, we are finding that it is the responsibility of those that provide to continue to provide regardless of the consequences to the provider. Migration is historically based on the migrant coming to America, seeking work without the expectation of being taken care of by the people of the nation. When did that change?? If jobs are not available or the immigrant does not qualify for the jobs available, the immigrant needs go elsewhere or stay where they are.

  4. “. . . a 2020 study by the U.S. Government Accountability Office which found that a median rent increase of $100 resulted in a 9% increase in homelessness nationwide” == proving once again that you can bend any statistic to your theory. The 9% increase in homelessness nationwide probably has a causal relationship to many, many other factors besides a $100 rent increase. Homelessness is increasing steadily pretty much in every urban area that does not take steps to just remove the tents and the filth the drug addicts bring, and will continue as long as it is “protected” activity. And the rent control regulations will become more and more oppressive until only the ultra-rich, mega-million property conglomerates are able to continue providing housing. That will make Newsom happy since a few conglomerates are so much easier to control than a whole lot of small independent owners of small buildings with one or a few units.

  5. Genius thinks she can cap rents and grant extended stays. Do not landlords also face inflation? Reality bites. How long before the next eviction moratoria? Why be a landlord in CA? Landlords will shrug, housing will dilapidate. Nothing will be built or improved. Anyone with sense will leave.

  6. Really??? says

    I have a friend who has carried a tenant for 1 1/2 years.

    Now this Marxist genius wants to do this to his rental property?

    Wow…..

    The Democrats really have gone over the Communist cliff.

    No wonder Frisco is in the gutter, and almost 700,000 have left the state.

  7. WHO is going to pay for this? You can’t expect the property owner to carry the deadbeats. As a taxpayer, I don’t want to pay their rent. This is ridiculous. Keep digging into pockets that are empty…brilliant! Liberals at their finest.

  8. Amy Sellers says

    We have protections to keep people from becoming homeless; they are called contracts!
    If they pay their rent they have a place to live. California makes it so hard on landlords, that its amazing anyone is willing to rent property.
    Government is here to serve taxpayers, not add to their burdens, by changing the laws we work under.

    • I pay my rent every month on time a contract does say you have to pay to stay but when that contract is up you go month to month then the hikes happen both my wife and I both work it’s still tough it’s stupid greedy people who make stupid comments like that when they take taxes I don’t even notice I’ve always paid taxes it’s just another bill I pay just like any other and so what if it helps a family from living on the street a mother a father son daughter baby you don’t want to help people?

  9. What burden does money in the bank have I have money in the bank have

  10. I pay my rent every month on time both my wife work, it’s still tough weak minded greedy people make comments like that contracts say pay to stay agreed but once that contract ends you go month to month then the hikes start. Taxes have been a way of life as far back as I can remember I’ve heard tax payers complaining about how much their paying oh how sad because I can get $200 shoes any shoe works for me if the walk I’m wearing them I know we’re not talking about shoes so don’t try to defend your shoes the point is as those who live in the United States you are under contract to stay here you don’t pay you go to jail so pay to stay when your rent is hiked and stop complaining to renters it’s failure to pay to tax payers it’s tax evasion figure it out you’ll want sympathy when your landlord Uncle Sam raises rent it’s not wrong to help those who need it. A mom dad son daughter baby from being out in the streets don’t you want to help people? When you hold responsibility and authority over others we will always have the burden of carrying others

  11. “EARTH TO DEMOCRATS”…EARTH TO DEMOCRATS….YOU CAUSED THE INFLATION PROBLEM…”EARTH TO DEMOCRATS….STUPID STUPID PEOPLE

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