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City Council Passes New Protections for Renters

Emergency Ordinance Addresses Gap in State Law

Post Date:11/27/2019 2:30 PM

San Luis Obispo City Council passed an “emergency ordinance” last night to protect residents from potentially significant year-end rent increases and eviction notices in advance of a new state law going into effect on Jan. 1, 2020. In San Luis Obispo, about 65 percent of residents rent, and housing has been identified by the City Council as a major city goal.

City staff presented the proposed new ordinance at a special City Council meeting on Tuesday, Nov. 26, following complaints from local renters, including from some who have sought legal assistance from the city.

The state’s Tenant Protection Act of 2019 (AB 1482), which was signed by the governor Oct. 8, caps annual rent increases to no more than 10 percent a year and requires landlords to show just cause before evicting a tenant in good standing. The city’s new ordinance has the same rent and eviction provisions as the state law and went into effect immediately following the City Council’s vote.

Several California cities, including Grover Beach, Los Angeles, San Mateo, Redwood City, Daly City, Milpitas, and others, have adopted emergency ordinances establishing protections during the gap period between when the law was signed and when it goes into effect on Jan. 1, 2020.

Under city law, the City Council may enact an emergency ordinance under certain conditions, such as to address immediate threats to public health and safety. City staff have provided information about the new city law to legal assistance groups, which have reported a significant increase in requests for help from renters.

The state law, which will remain in place for 10 years, is part of a package of laws passed this year to address the state’s lack of affordable housing. The staff report and ordinance are available on the city’s website as well as the meeting video

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