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Decision on controversial renters' protections in Chula Vista postponed

CHULA VISTA, Calif. — After hours of public comment both for and against, Chula Vista's city council decided to postpone voting on a controversial proposal that would strengthen tenants' protections. 

This ordinance would essentially strengthen protections for tenants who are being forced out of their rental units through no fault of their own.

These no-fault evictions include a property owner who wants to undertake substantial renovations; remove the property from the rental market; or have a family member move into the unit.

Under the ordinance, in most cases, landlords would have to provide 60 days notice to renters to vacate and provide relocation assistance.

Imperial Beach's Siesta RV Park finally sells

A few years ago, residents of Siesta RV park in Imperial Beach caught a lucky break when plans to sell the land to a developer fell through.

Now, after a surprise change of ownership in January, residents say they are struggling anew. Rents are going up for many, utility bills seem inflated but there's no one to call for answers, and some tenants - and their trailers - are forced to move out every six months for 48 hours.

On the Siesta website, lots are said to rent from $800 to $1600. According to Andy Hall, Imperial Beach city manager, there are mobile home slips and recreational vehicle slips. The latter can be used only if there is no permanent residency. Thus the required rotations.

Landlords sue Alameda County over eviction ban

The state’s most powerful landlord group, the California Apartment Association, on Thursday sued Alameda County to end its broad eviction moratorium.

The suit marks the latest step toward dismantling COVID-19 protections for tenants, as health risks have diminished and many state and local programs and efforts have expired.

The Alameda County moratorium, enacted in March 2020, is one of the few surviving protections in the state. It essentially bans all evictions, either for nonpayment or other reasons, to keep renters from being displaced during the health crisis. Los Angeles also has a moratorium in place, and has been sued by the local landlord association.

LA Tenant Groups Are Suing California Over Decision To End Rent Relief

Los Angeles tenant groups are suing California’s housing department, alleging that the state’s decision to wind down its rent relief program on April 1 unlawfully cut off applicants waiting for funds and put them at risk of eviction.

California’s Housing and Community Development Department stopped taking new rent relief applications at the end of March. It also denied requests from April onward. The program had previously distributed relief for “prospective” rent that applicants couldn’t pay.

PRESS RELEASE: Tenants-Rights Groups Sue CA For Failing To Provide Rental Assistance To Eligible Tenants

Los Angeles, CA – The California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) is being sued by tenants’ rights groups Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment (ACCE Action) and Strategic Actions for a Just Economy (SAJE) over its failure to provide the full amount of rental assistance intended by the law establishing the state’s Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP), putting tenants at increased risk of eviction and homelessness. ACCE and SAJE are represented by Western Center on Law & Poverty, Public Counsel, and Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles.

As people waited for HCD’s often onerous system to process applications, HCD abruptly stopped accepting applications on March 31, 2022, cutting off people in need of assistance after that point even when they qualify for but have not yet received their full 18 months of rental assistance. Specifically, the suit says HCD is not providing assistance for prospective rent or expenses incurred after March 31, 2022, even for eligible households that submitted an ERAP application before applications closed.

This means applicants who were unable to pay April rent or beyond could still face eviction even if HCD approves their application, thereby defeating ERAP’s goal of preventing eviction and stabilizing households.

As LA City Hall Reopens, Virtual Public Comment At Meetings Has Gone. Not Everyone Is Happy About That

After being closed for more than two years due to COVID-19, Los Angeles City Hall has reopened to the public.

However, the reopening has brought mixed feelings to those wanting to participate in civic engagement.

While some visitors were excited to talk to City Council members face-to-face, several others believe the decision to strip away virtual public comment is a big problem.

"People have jobs; they can't just come in here to do one public comment when people already got used to being able to do that over the phone, at their work or at their home where they're safe," said Sergio Vargas, the lead organizer for the Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment.

Public able to attend LA City Council meetings in person for first time since March 2020

The public was able to return to meeting at the Los Angeles City Council chambers Wednesday for the first time since March 2020. 

With COVID restrictions lifted, the council has allowed members of the public to return in person and has also ended the ability for people to comment remotely which some people say should still be an option.

Adam Smith of West L.A. spoke at the meeting saying "good to be back in the room," but added:

"I do think it's really troubling that, accessibility-wise, people can't call in and give public comment anymore. ... Accessibility has always been an issue at these meetings, and folks that are disparately impacted by the policies coming out of this room have trouble coming in to give public comment on a weekday morning."

LA City Council lets public into meeting for first time since March 2020

LOS ANGELES (CNS) — With COVID-19 restrictions now lifted, the public was allowed into the Los Angeles City Council chambers during the body's meeting Wednesday for the first time since March 2020 — but with people no longer able to comment remotely, most of those who spoke urged council members to reverse that decision.

Adam Smith of West L.A. was the first to speak at the meeting Wednesday, and told council members that it's "good to be back in the room." But he added:

"I do think it's really troubling that, accessibility-wise, people can't call in and give public comment anymore. ... Accessibility has always been an issue at these meetings, and folks that are disparately impacted by the policies coming out of this room have trouble coming in to give public comment on a weekday morning."