Legislative Update - Victory - SB 1190 to be Amended

Legislative Updates,

Victory - SB 1190 to be Amended

You did it! Your voice was heard by Senators. SB 1190 (Durazo) passed off the Senate floor but with the promise of amendments in the Assembly that will remove the ridiculous fines for violations of AB 1482, the Tenant Protection Act of 2019. Thank you to all those who wrote to their Senator!

SB 1190 began as a bill to expand the rights of tenants who are victims of crime. While SCRHA would like to see some of that language clarified for practicality, the main concern with the bill was the addition of language that would grant local prosecutors investigative and enforcement powers for AB 1482. It would have also included the awarding of restitution and fines up to $20,000 for violations of the act.

The amendments are not yet in print, but we are pleased with this development and will continue to work on the bill as it makes its way through the Assembly.

We hope to circle back with more positive updates in the near future!

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The Legislature reconvened in May, and since then, many bills have been amended to impact the rental housing industry. Here is a summary of some of the major bills we are tracking.

AB 828 (Ting) - AB 828 (Ting) - Temporary moratorium on foreclosures and unlawful detainer actions: coronavirus (COVID-19): This bill would prohibit a state court, county sheriff, or party to a residential unlawful detainer case from accepting for filing, or taking any further action including executing a writ of possession or otherwise proceeding with an unlawful detainer action during an emergency related to the COVID-19 virus is in effect and 15 days thereafter. As initially proposed, the bill would have allowed courts to allow tenants to stay in their homes if they could prove a COVID-related hardship and order a 25% reduction in rent for a year, as well as a mandate a repayment plan for the initial past-due rent. The author has amended the bill to remove the 25% rent reduction portion. SCRHA will continue to oppose the bill unless it is amended to significantly mitigate negative impacts on rental owners. Thank you to those who responded to the SCRHA Action Alert on the bill…it worked!

SB 1410 (Caballero) - COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program: This bill seeks to establish the COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program. Households would be eligible if they demonstrate an inability to pay rent due between April 1, 2020, and October 31, 2020 as a result of COVID-19. The Department of Housing and Community Development would develop a process to confirm inability to pay rent and to obtain the owner’s consent to participate. The bill would require each payment to an owner under the program to equal at least 80% of the amount of rent owed by the household to the owner. No more than 7 months of rent would be covered. Owners who participate would be prohibited from increasing the rent between the date the owner consents to participate in the program and December 31, 2020. Late fees would also be prohibited. Funding will need to be identified to implement the program. SCRHA is hopeful that the bill can be amended so we can eventually lend support, however, there are concerns with the limitation on rent increases on the heels of AB 1482 rent caps.

AB 3260 (Wicks) - Tenancy: security deposit: This bill proposes to require that owners and managers allow tenants to pay their security deposits either by obtaining rental security insurance or a surety bond or allowing the tenant to pay the deposit in installments. SCRHA is opposed but would consider removing opposition should the bill change to make alternative payment methods optional for property owners and managers.

AB 3352 (Freidman) - Hiring of real property: tenant remedies:  This bill would, beginning July 1, 2021, require a city or county that receives a complaint of a substandard building or a lead hazard violation from a tenant, to inspect the building, cite the lead hazard violations or the building, and provide free copies of the inspection report and citations issued to the tenant. SCRHA does not see a need for this bill as complaints of substandard housing are addressed by local code compliance departments. As written, the bill would allow property owners to receive citations even if they were not notified by tenants of possible issues.

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