Attention City Council: It's Noel Weiss' "9 & 20 Solution!"
(The “9 & 20 Solution”)
On August 18, 1987, when the City Council raised the tenant relocation benefits to $2,000 (non-seniors and non-disabled) and $5,000 (seniors and disabled), the average rent in Los Angeles was approximately $300. The Los Angeles Times reported on November 1, 2006, that the average rent now approximates $1,700. Even though the average rent in rent controlled buildings is less, there is little doubt that renters, including middle class renters, face enormous financial obstacles when the owners of the apartments in which they reside decide to terminate their tenancies in order to either demolish the building or convert it to condominiums.
Current law provides that renters in such a circumstance be paid $3,450 (non-seniors and non-disabled) and $8,550 (seniors and disabled). This is clearly insufficient based on any reasonable standard. The purpose of the relocation fee is to smooth out the rough edges and enable a reasonable transition from the payment of rent controlled rates to market rates.
In the case of seniors, who are on fixed incomes, the disabled whose income earning capabilities are also less, and families with children, who face ongoing and ever increasing financial burdens, the current mandated payments will only cover, on average, a security deposit plus 6 months rent, assuming $1000 for moving costs. In the case of non-seniors and non-disabled, the amount barely covers first month's rent, last month's rent, and moving costs.
The economic obstacles facing the renters of this City is exacerbated by the fact that the vacancy rates in the various parts of the City are 2%-3%. According to MPF Yieldstar, the gross occupancy rate for the second quarter of 2006, Citywide was 97.3%.
With such a low supply of apartments, counter-posed against a large demand, fueled furtherby an epidemic of no-fault evictions under the Ellis Act, it is likely that the rental rates will continue to increase.
It is therefore appropriate to raise the base amount of relocation assistance to be paid to tenants immediately in order to relieve the stress they confront. A comparable amount to the 1987 levels, given today's market rates, is $9,000 for non-seniors and non-disabled; and $20,000 for seniors, disabled, and families with children. (The “9 & 20 Solution”);
I THEREFORE MOVE that the City Attorney be directed to draft an Ordinance amending Los Angeles Municipal Code Sections 47.06 and 47.07 to provide for a tenant relocation fee of $9,000 to non-seniors and non-disabled, and $20,000 to seniors, disabled, and families with children and to report back with the new Ordinance within ten days;
I FURTHER MOVE that given the economic exigencies of the situation and how adversely impacted tenants are by their current circumstance, that this Ordinance be considered on an expedited basis and passed as an urgency measure.
PRESENTED BY: __________________________ ____________________________
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