Dear Editor – What is Rent Control Costing the City?

Dear Editor – 

 Culver City Council likes to insist they are simply implementing the people’s wishes in instituting a very expensive, duplicative, local rent control program. The following letter [from May 2020] with 120 signatures, begs to differ. 

“Dear Honorable Mayor, Vice-Mayor, Council Members and Staff:

Re: Realignment of City Budget due to COVID-19 Shutdown and Losses in Revenue

In light of the pandemic and its devastating impacts at all levels of society, the Culver City Coalition for Fiscal Responsibility (CCCFR), on behalf of local residents, tenants, business operators and housing providers, call upon our city leaders to expeditiously reevaluate funding priorities.
With the city’s recent declaration of a Fiscal Emergency, which has been further exacerbated by a shutdown-induced declining revenue stream, the city must take action to suspend and/or pare back non-essential programs and services, redirect resources toward programs that will best address and serve our community’s greatest needs and expand the safety net offered to those who have been most harmed.

Given the California state renter protections put in place this past year, one program that merits immediate consideration for termination is the Interim Rent Control Ordinance (IRCO). Variations between the protections offered under IRCO and statewide rent control do not justify this continued investment.

The high cost of continuing to fund IRCO is not in the best financial interest of the city or its residents, especially when compounded with the potential million-dollar plus annual cost of establishing and maintaining a permanent local rent control ordinance. Furthermore, circumstances have changed, and today’s rental market is markedly different from when IRCO was initially conceived and placed into service.

• Fast track the budget review and realignment process: Identify programs and services to suspend and/or pare back. Redirect a significant portion of those funds for COVID-19 related assistance programs for affected residents and businesses.
• Terminate IRCO: When the local ordinance was enacted there was a desire to limit rent increases due to some previous large rent hikes. This was prior to passage of the statewide renter protections and cap on rent increases law (AB1482). Both these measures provide for strong tenant protections and prevent excessive rent increases. Additionally, as a result of the shutdown and according to CoStar data, local rents are falling at an annualized rate of 5%.
• Suspend Rental Registry efforts: Creating a Rent Registry prior to determining if the City will even have a permanent Rent Control Ordinance in light of AB1482 and AB2406 is wasteful. Until such time as all voices can be heard regarding the future of IRCO and possibly until the state legislature acts on AB2406 regarding a statewide rental registry, pause this costly initiative.
• Defer to AB1482: Allow statewide rent control to self-regulate as is being done in every other city in the state that doesn’t have a local rent control ordinance. No evidence exists to support the notion that the city needs to establish its own staffing and infrastructure to oversee and enforce AB1482. Numerous tenant advocacy groups are available to support tenants should a perceived enforcement issue or any other landlord/tenant issue arise. Penalties are substantial for owners who fail to comply with AB1482. Additionally, the city’s existing Landlord Tenant Mediation Board could have its duties expanded to assist in any related matters.
• Redirect previously allocated IRCO funding: Identify, expand and/or develop programs that help tenants based upon need, thus ensuring that benefits specifically target those who need assistance.

On behalf of the Culver City Coalition for Fiscal Responsibility (CCCFR), we look forward to supporting our city’s efforts to develop fiscally responsible pathways in which to aid those most affected by this pandemic.

Gary E. Duboff

Signatory List Below:

Culver City Chamber of Commerce Organization

Crystal Alexander Resident

Erik Alexander Housing Provider

Ken Alexander Resident

Richard Anderson Resident

Samantha Baldwin Resident (HP)

Joshua Berg Resident

Norman Berg Resident (HP)

Irina Berg Resident (HP)

Joe Bitew Resident (HP)

Dena Bouskos Housing Provider

Andrea Bowen Housing Provider

David Bowen Housing Provider

Dannie Cavanaugh Resident, Business Operator

Jerry Chabola Resident (HP), Business Operator

Janet Chabola Resident (HP)

Scott Chesnut Housing Provider

Jeff Cooper Resident

Rafia Cooper Resident

Veronique Cotia Resident (HP)

Vicki Daly Redholtz Resident

Richard David Resident (HP)

Robert David Resident (HP)

Dennis David Resident (HP)

Gary Duboff Housing Provider

Paul Ehrlich Resident

Alan Elmont Resident

E & S Ring Mgmt. Business Operator (Meadows)

Kelli Estes Resident (HP)

Billy Flick Resident

Dorie Fullerton Resident (Tenant)

Philip Garraway Resident (HP)

Dan Garde Resident (HP)

Kate Garde Resident (HP)

Scott Garland Resident

Antonia Garland Resident

Garland Realty Co. Business

Emelie Gerard Resident

Glynis Gerber Housing Provider

Selwyn Gerber Housing Provider

Natalie Gerber Housing Provider

Jon Gerber Housing Provider

Cara Giallanza Resident

Jerome Glaser Housing Provider

Nancy Glaser Housing Provider

Clinton Goldsmith Resident (HP)

Martine Goldsmith Resident (HP)

Howard Gollnek Resident

Lucia Gurrola Resident

Roy Gurrola Resident

Khin Khin Gyi Resident (HP)

Bernardo Herzer Resident (HP)

Jennifer Herzer Resident (HP)

Rich Hibbs Resident, Business Operator

Myra Horowitz Resident

Jennifer Hubenthal Housing Provider

Tom Johnson Housing Provider

Colleen Jones Resident

Patt Kaye Housing Provider

Rich Kissel Resident

Fran Kissel Resident

Beata Kmiec Resident (Tenant)

Gretchen Kubacky Resident (HP)

Kevin Lachoff Resident

Tasha Lowiitz Resident

Jonathan Mann Housing Provider

Marny Maslon Housing Provider

Javier Miglin Resident (HP)

Joan Moon Housing Provider

Dan O’Brien Resident

Paddy O’Brien Resident (HP)

Ronald Ostrin Resident

Murray Ostrin Housing Provider

Dennis Page Housing Provider

Joe Palazzolo Housing Provider

Jason Perrault Housing Provider

Greg Proctor Resident (Tenant)

Steve Refling Resident (Tenant)

Steve Reitzfeld Resident

Don Reitzfeld Resident (HP)

John Riordan Resident (HP), Business Operator

Jorge Rodas Resident (HP)

Martha Rodas Resident (HP)

Steve Roe Housing Provider Monika Rogash Resident (HP)

Richard Rothstein Resident (HP)

Theresa Russell Resident (HP)

Elizabeth Saul Resident (Tenant)

Eric Sayer Housing Provider

Aj Saxon Resident (HP)

Judy Scott Resident (HP)

Todd Shays Resident, Business Operator

Bruce Silverman Resident (HP)

Louis Skirtich Housing Provider

Nancy Smeets Housing Provider

Jozelle Smith Resident

Greg Spinrad Business Operator

Bryan Stevens Housing Provider

Laura Stuart Resident

Meg Sullivan Housing Provider

Donna Thayer Resident

Leslie Thompson Resident (HP)

Jessica Tiegs Resident (Tenant)

Olga Vaysberg Resident

David Voncannon Resident, Business Operator

Bob Wallace Resident

Jamie Wallace Resident

Sidney Wallace Resident

Cathy Walton Housing Provider

Howard Walton Housing Provider

Joy Weisner Resident (HP)

Pablo Weiser Resident (HP)

Leonardo Wilborn Resident

John Wileman Resident (HP)

JC Wileman Resident (HP)

Kyle Williams Resident (HP)

Michael Winn Housing Provider

Karen Winn Housing Provider

Heather Wollin Resident

Roderick Wollin Resident”

The Actors' Gang

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