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Affordable Housing

AHF Criticizes ‘Insufficient Rent-Gouging Bill’ and Warns of 8%, 9% Increases

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Housing Is A Human Right Criticizes Insufficient AB 1482 Rent-Gouging Bill

SACRAMENTO — California Governor Gavin Newsom is celebrating his signing of Assembly Bill 1482, which frames itself as providing the nation’s strongest statewide renter protections. Unfortunately, AB 1482 is insufficient in providing relief to California’s 17 million renters.

According to Housing Is A Human Right, AB 1482, which some have framed as “rent control,” is anything but. Rent control seeks to mirror the rate of allowable rent increases with the rate of inflation. AB 1482 instead allows landlords to raise rents 5% on top of inflation, annually. That means landlords can — and soon, they will — legally raise rents by 8 to 9% each year.

The organization believes that it might be one of the reasons why the California Apartment Association, the nation’s largest statewide lobbying group for landlords, didn’t oppose the bill.

Separately, the bill only actually affects 7% of rent hikes in the state, and it expires after only 10 years, securing long-term protections for no one. 

René Christian Moya, Director of Housing Is a Human Right, says, “What Californians desperately need in this period of runaway rental prices, and what polls show they overwhelmingly support, is real Rent Control Now! The Rental Affordability Act allows for that possibility.” 

Housing Is A Human Right is the housing advocacy division of AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF). HHR and AHF are the leading organizations behind the Rental Affordability Act, the ballot measure that allows communities to expand rent control in California.

The nationwide tenants movement is surging, believing that California renters are demanding solutions for the housing affordability and homelessness crises. HHR and AHF have already collected more than half-a-million signatures to put the Rental Affordability Act on the 2020 November ballot. 

In addition, they report a recent poll conducted by A/B Consulting and commissioned by AIDS Healthcare Foundation found that 75 percent of likely and extremely likely voters support the Rental Affordability Act.

To learn more about the Rental Affordability Act and to sign the petition, go to: https://www.housinghumanright.org/sign-raa/.

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Affordable Housing

Senior Tenant Sues Santa Monica Landlord to Stay in Her Home

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photo by Benjamin Massello

SANTA MONICA (Santa Monica Daily Press)– A 72-year-old woman with disabilities who has lived in the same Santa Monica studio for 38 years has filed suit in Los Angeles Superior Court against her landlords.

In the suit filed Monday, St. James v. Bills, tenant Zandra St. James charges that her landlord violated state law by refusing to accept her housing choice voucher to offset her monthly rent. As a result, St. James faces eviction.

St. James’ apartment is rent-controlled, but with annual incremental increases. The rent has risen to the point that it now demands more than 90 percent of her monthly Social Security disability check.

She was awarded a housing choice voucher in 2019 and immediately sought to use the subsidy to help pay her […]

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Affordable Housing

Apply for Affordable Senior Housing at LGBT Center’s McCadden Campus

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LOS ANGELES — The City of West Hollywood is getting the word out that applications for new affordable senior housing will be accepted by the Los Angeles LGBT Center’s Senior Services program for the forthcoming McCadden Campus senior housing site, which will offer 98 new, affordable, low-income units designed for people who are ages 62 and over.

The LGBT Center’s McCadden Campus senior housing is anticipated to be completed in fall 2020 and will feature studios and one-bedroom rentals.

There will be fully accessible units for people with mobility hearing, and/or vision disabilities. Future residents will be welcomed into the LA LGBT Center’s wide range of community programming specializing in HIV+ wellness, gender identity, and LGBT social and cultural support.

Other services will include meals, case management, employment training, and more.

The new senior housing site will be located adjacent to the Center’s Harry & Jeanette Weinberg Senior Center at the Anita May Rosenstein Campus on N. Las Palmas Avenue in Hollywood, just east of the City of West Hollywood, and is a project of the Los Angeles LGBT Center and Thomas Safran & Associates.

The City of West Hollywood contributed $2.1 million to the project from the City’s local housing trust fund. Applications will be accepted by the Los Angeles LGBT Center until Wednesday, March 4.

There will be three opportunities for community members to submit applications in person in the City of West Hollywood:

  1. Monday, March 2 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the West Hollywood Park Auditorium, located at 647 N. San Vicente Boulevard; and
  2. Wednesday, March 4 from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the West Hollywood Library Community Meeting Room, located at 625 N. San Vicente Boulevard.

The City of West Hollywood has a decades-long commitment to providing social services, health education, and information to community members in-need and to improve quality of life. The City’s Social Services Division and Strategic Initiatives Division budget more than $5 million annually to support programs that impact thousands of people in West Hollywood through local nonprofit organizations.

The City’s Aging in Place/Aging in Community program was launched in 2016 to improve the quality of life and well-being of older adults in the City. For additional information, please visit weho.org/aging.

The City of West Hollywood’s Rent Stabilization & Housing Division promotes equity and inclusion through access to housing, and by working to change the underlying systems leading to and perpetuating disparities.

The Division provides a breadth of information and services to both tenants and property owners, including housing counseling and information materials. The City facilitates the development of new housing with an affordable component, the rehabilitation of existing housing for lasting affordability, and the development of mixed-use projects that include affordable housing units. For additional information, please visit weho.org/housing.

For more information about programs and services for seniors in the City of West Hollywood, please contact the City of West Hollywood’s Social Services Division at (323) 848-6510 or visit www.weho.org/wehocares.

For more information about McCadden Campus senior housing, please contact the Los Angeles LGBT Center’s Senior Services program by calling (323) 860-5830 or visit http://mccaddencampus.

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Affordable Housing

CA Lawmakers Say Limiting Development Fees Combats Housing Crisis

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Photo by Sacha T'Sas

SACRAMENTO (AP) — In their latest bid to combat California’s affordable housing crisis, state lawmakers on Monday announced a package of bills to limit development fees that can add tens of thousands of dollars to the price of a new home.

However, local governments depend heavily on the fees, which typically are used to pay for schools, roads and parks. Lawmakers said they were discussing those needs but have not yet decided how the fees might be replaced.

The fees are “vital to local government’s ability to pay for the infrastructure that residents living in new developments need,” Chris Lee, legislative representative for the California State Association of Counties said in a statement. He said counties are glad to […]

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