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November 8, 2016 — California General Election
Ballot and voting information for San Mateo County.
This is an archive of a past election.

Revisions to Rent Stabilization and Just Cause for Eviction

Local
November 8, 2016California General Election

City of East Palo Alto
Measure J - Majority Approval Required

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Election Results

Passed

4,998 votes yes (80.2%)

1,237 votes no (19.8%)

  • 100% of precincts reporting (14/14).
  • 323,303 ballots counted.

Shall the 2010 Rent Stabilization and Just Cause for Eviction Ordinance be strengthened by simplifying administrative processes and procedures, defining maximum allowable rent revising the registration fee pass-through, eliminating annual registration requirements, streamlining annual general adjustment calculations, addressing nuisance-based tenancy termination, strengthening informational notice provisions, and authorizing the City Council to revise the Ordinance when in conflict with federal or state law?

Impartial analysis / Proposal

This ordinance, placed on the ballot by the City Council, would amend the East Palo Alto Rent Stabilization and Just Cause for Eviction Ordinance of 2010 to simplify and clarify various processes and procedures. Input on the revisions has been received from both tenant and landlord representatives. 

The revisions would:

* Define "maximum allowable rent" (MAR) which is currently not defined in the ordinance. In addition, the provisions of the ordinance the amount of rent must comply with are expressly set forth. The definition states the MAR shall not allow an overall rent increase exceeding 10% in any twelve month period.

* Reduce paperwork by eliminating the annual rent registration and certification of each unit. Units will only need to be registered when there is a change in tenancy and a certificate will be issued at that time or upon request.

* Change "registration fee" to "program fee" since annual registration is eliminated

* Include current monthly pass-through registration fee amount of $9.75 in the MAR amount, since fee pass-through provisions are being eliminated and will no longer be treated as a separate amount. The separate pass-through fee was a source of confusion to many tenants and landlords.

* Streamline annual general adjustment calculations to eliminate the detailed provisions related to banking and instead emphasize overall limitations on allowable rent increases. Clarify that only one rent increase per year is allowed and in no instance may rents rise above 10% annually.

* Strengthen informational notice provisions.

* More clearly articulate Rent Stablization Board authority with regard to requiring notices and other informational requirements

* Allow for nuisance-based tenancy termination, especially where a rental is a single family dwelling, and the disorderly conduct affects the peace, quiet, comfort, or safety of the owner or residents of an adjacent property

* Authorize the City Council to revise the Ordinance in those limited instances when the Ordinance is found to be in conflict with federal or state law. Under this provision, the only changes which could be made by the City Council are those required by law; otherwise, future revisions to the Ordinance still will be subject to approval by the voters. Without this provision, because the Rent Stabilization Ordinance was adopted by the voters, only the voters could revise it.

* Simplify and make consistent the language related to the various changes so all terms in the Ordinance are clear and there are no inconsistencies.

* Clarify that program data may be shared for taxing purposes in the light of the provisions of Measure J.

"A Yes" vote would revise the 2010 Rent Stabilization and Just Cause for Eviction Ordinance as set forth above.

A "No" vote would leave the 2010 Rent Stabilization and Just Cause for Eviction Ordinance unchanged. 

— City Attorney of East Palo Alto

Arguments FOR

Let's keep our community affordable for seniors, working families, our children, and our future. Help prevent displacement. VOTE YES on J.

Since 1984, East Palo Alto has had a strong voter approved rent stabilization law that protects residents against unjust rent increases and evictions by those who cared more about speculation and profit and less about the community.

A YES vote on Measure J will strengthen and streamline the updated Rent Stabilization and Just Cause for Eviction Ordinance (RSO) passed in 2010.

Measure J continues the tradition of protection and fairness in rental housing for our community. It simplifies administrative procedures for landlords and tenants. It reinforces protection for tenants from displacement and exorbitant rent increases and guarantees property owners the right to a fair return on their investments.

The City Council has unanimously placed this Measure on the ballot after extensive public input from tenants, homeowners, and landlords.

A YES vote on Measure J will:

* STRENGTHEN compliance with eviction-related notice requirements to tenants

* CLARIFY the calucations for how much rent can increase each year

* CLARIFY the definition of maximum allowable rent

* CREATE more efficiency and cost savings by modifying the annual registration requirements

* REVISE the registration fee pass-through

* AUTHORIZE the City Council to revise any part of the ordinance when in conflict with federal or state law

* PRESERVE landlords' rights to a fair return.

Vote YES on Measure J to help prevent displacement and protect affordable rental housing in our community.

/s/ Lisa Gauthier, Councilmember

/s/ Ruben Abrica, Councilmember

/s/ William Bryon Webster, President, East Palo Alto Council of Tenants (EPACT)

/s/ Yolanda Caballero de Ortiz, Board Member, EPA Senior Center Inc.

/s/ Mauren Pattarelli Larsson, Rent Stabilization Board Member 

 

Arguments AGAINST

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