This year, California voters may get to decide whether cities should be able to enforce stronger rent control. The measure is largely funded by the AIDS Healthcare Foundation’s “Housing is a Human Right” and tenants‘ rights groups throughout the state.
The measure strives to repeal the Costa-Hawkins Rental Housing Act, which protects landlords’ rights to raise rent as market rates increase and prevents cities from capping rent prices. Current rent control laws are prevented from including single-family residences, townhouses, condos, and duplexes. All units built after 1995 are also exempt.
Proponents say they have over 588,000 signatures – more than 220,000 over the 365,880 needed. Opponents, however, claim this measure, if passed, will do just the opposite of what it seeks to accomplish. They fear it will result in an “affordable housing freeze,” stymieing new construction across the state, thus, further contributing to the current housing crisis.