Expands Local Governments’ Authority to Enact Rent Control on Residential Property. Initiative Statute
Expands local governments’ ability to implement rent control on some housing now covered by the 1995 Costa-Hawkins Act. Under the CHA, rent control cannot be implemented for housing built or occupied after 1995. Rent control cannot be used on dwellings with distinct titles such as single-family homes, condos, townhouses, etc. In light of the soaring rents in every part of California, this year’s Proposition 21 would allow local governments to abolish some CHA provisions. It upholds the bar on property first occupied in the past 16 years owned by natural persons (not those owned by corporations) with no more than two separate units, e.g., single family, condos, duplexes, subdivided units such a cooperative and community apartments. In all other eligible properties, local governments can limit rent increases to 15% during the first three years after a vacancy. While it does nothing to reduce current rental rates, it would slow the further rate increases for new tenants. Because the decision will remain in local control, it gives voice to local citizens based on perceived differences in their own communities, housing stock, and rental demand.
The Rev Dr Rick Schlosser