Sponsored link
Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Sponsored link

UncategorizedCampos bill on Ellis Act clear first hurdle

Campos bill on Ellis Act clear first hurdle

All three members of the Land Use Committee -- Jane Kim, Scott Wiener, and Malia Cohen -- voted for a key tenant bill
All three members of the Land Use Committee — Jane Kim, Scott Wiener, and Malia Cohen — voted for a key tenant bill

By Tim Redmond

March 24, 2014 — Legislation by Sup. David Campos that would significantly raise the cost of evicting tenants under the Ellis Act cleared its first hurdle today as the Land Use and Economic Development Committee approved it 3-0.

The unanimous vote is a sign of how serious the tenant movement has become in the city today – and how even supervisors like Scott Wiener, who has been friendly to landlords, are willing to sign on to pro-tenant bills.

Wiener, along with Sup. Jane Kim and Sup. Malia Cohen, voted to send the measure to the board with the recommendation that it be approved.

The measure would require a landlord who is evicting a tenant under the Ellis Act to pay relocation fees equal to the difference between the current rent and market rent – for two years. That could mean more than $50,000 for some long-term tenants in neighborhoods where rents are soaring.

The hearing today was much shorter than last week’s session, which featured dozens of speakers on all sides and a tenant rally in front of City Hall. But Wiener persisted with his concerns about how the bill would impact small landlords.

He asked over and over again if landlords would get a chance at a “hardship” exemption if they couldn’t afford to pay the fees – and how the Rent Board would evaluate that situation.

The reality is that almost no small landlords use the Ellis Act; it’s a handful of big speculators. And as Campos pointed out, all the concern over the potential for a theoretical small landlord to be impacted by the measure “ignores the big picture of what’s going on out there.” No legislation is perfect, and overall, the damage that’s being done by the rash of evictions is way more serious than the possibility that one small owner could be financially pressured to pay relocation fees to a tenant.

The measure now goes to the full board April 1, starting the next round of the political battle. It seems pretty likely now that Campos will have six votes – but Mayor Ed Lee has declined so far to say if he supports or opposes the measure. So to be sure it gets enacted, the measure needs a veto-proof eight votes.

Of course, in this Year of the Tenant, it’s hard to imagine that the mayor would come out against the bill. Or is it?

48 Hills welcomes comments in the form of letters to the editor, which you can submit here. We also invite you to join the conversation on our FacebookTwitter, and Instagram

Tim Redmond
Tim Redmond
Tim Redmond has been a political and investigative reporter in San Francisco for more than 30 years. He spent much of that time as executive editor of the Bay Guardian. He is the founder of 48hills.

Sponsored link


Gaza protesters on Golden Gate Bridge jailed on felony charges

Unusual CHP tactic guaranteed that 26 people spend at least one night behind bars.

Screen Grabs: Berlin & Beyond &… Milli Vanilli?

The German-language film fest keeps broadening its borders. Plus: Ken Loach's finale 'Old Oak' and 'Dig! XX'

Federal official tells SF to fix ongoing problems at ‘uninhabitable’ Plaza East public housing

But despite successful organizing campaign, repairs haven't started.

More by this author

The city’s budget battle comes into clear view ….

.... Plus broken elevators in SROs, a mess in the city's housing voucher program—and where did Breed's 'Dreamkeeper' money go? That's The Agenda for April 14-21

Wildly inaccurate story leads to death threats for activist, 48hills writer

Lisa Gray Garcia, who writes as Tiny, gets attacked after New York Post does a sensational story about her work with UCLA medical students.

Wiener tries to fundraise—for himself—from Peskin mayoral campaign announcement

Plus: Will the right-wing candidates really do an anti-Peskin RCV strategy?
Sponsored link

You might also likeRELATED