Gov. Newsom signaled on April 24, he wants to sign a housing “affordability law” just after a controversial rent control proposal cleared its first committee in the Legislature.
He released his statement hours after a bill that prohibits landlords from raising rent by more than 5% above the Consumer Price Index passed the Assembly’s Housing & Community Development Committee by a 6-1 vote.
Critics say Assembly Bill 1482 could upset market stability, stymie development, and financially hurt property owners. California voters in November rejected Proposition 10, a statewide rent control initiative. However, the bill’s author, Assemblyman Chiu, D-San Francisco, said lawmakers must act to protect renters from “egregious rent increases” in the future.
The night before the committee hearing, Newsom’s chief of staff Ann O’Leary talked with rent control supporters & people struggling to afford rent in the lobby of his offices. She said Newsom told lawmakers he wanted the Legislature to work toward a legislative deal to help California renters.
Opponents showed up in force, too. Those against AB 1482 included landlords, small property owners, and multifamily housing residents who called the proposal an “ill-conceived housing-killer bill.”
While campaigning for governor, Newsom said he opposed last year’s rent control measure, but Newsom has also said he supports expanding rent control in theory and wants the Legislature to craft new laws.
A companion rent control bill, Assembly Bill 36, was pulled by its author, Assemblyman Richard Bloom, D-Santa Monica, ahead of the hearing. Bloom’s legislation would have reformed the Costa Hawkins Rental Housing Act, a law preventing local governments from imposing rent control on apartments built after 1995.