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Rent Control Law

The new year brings a major change in Santa Monica's tough-as-nails rent control law by allowing one-time-only increases on units with historically low rents if the apartments are voluntarily vacated. The Threshold Rent Program, which went into effect Jan. 1, comes after various efforts over the past few years to provide a mid-course correction for a 13-year-old rent control law that is under continual challenge from the state Legislature, courts and landlords.
August 15, 1985 | KENNETH J. FANUCCHI, Times Staff Writer
Santa Monica's Rent Control Board has sued 74 landlords for failure to pay the city rent control fees, which they have refused or neglected to collect from tenants. Joel Levy, the board's general counsel, said some landlords owe as much as $12,000 and that the total is between $50,000 and $100,000. The city's rent control law requires landlords to pay $84 a year per rental unit, then collect the cost from tenants.
The Los Angeles City Council on Tuesday passed urgency legislation aimed at heading off potentially large rent increases for some mobile home tenants. The council acted after several tenants at Los Olivos Mobile Home Park in Sylmar told council members Friday they feared the increases because a recent state Court of Appeal ruling removed them from the protection of the city's rent control law. Council members said they were unaware of the ruling until notified by the tenants.
September 10, 2006 | Kevin Postema, Special to The Times
Question: I've lived in a rent-controlled apartment for 24 years. For the last 22 years, I've had the use of a garage space. My building has just been sold, and the new owner wants to charge me $250 for the use of the garage, or I will have to give up my spot. Although I've had use of it for all those years, it isn't written into my rental agreement. Does the new owner have the right to charge me rent for the parking space or evict me from this garage?
December 26, 1985 | STEPHEN BRAUN, Times Staff Writer
In the first major legal challenge to West Hollywood's rent control law, a landlord has sued the city to overturn a key provision compelling apartment owners to regularly paint and replace carpets and drapes in their tenants' units. The lawsuit, filed last week by landlord Marianne Berman in the Santa Monica district of the Los Angeles County Superior Court, also sought a restraining order to prevent West Hollywood from holding a rent administration hearing involving one of Berman's tenants.
December 16, 1992 | LEN HALL, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The City Council voted 5 to 0 Tuesday night to hold an election on extending rent control to recently vacated mobile home park spaces. Because of the potential cost of up to $30,000 for the election, the council delayed setting a date and appealed to the park tenants to help pay expenses. The council agreed to set an election date no later than July 1.
February 25, 1989
In a major victory for Santa Monica, a federal judge Friday granted the city's motion for summary judgment and ruled against a 93-year-old landlady challenging the city's strict rent control law. Landlords had hoped to use the case to overturn Santa Monica's rent controls on constitutional grounds. But U.S. District Judge Ronald S. W.
July 19, 1994 | STEPHANIE SIMON
Hoping to protect mobile home owners until the turn of the century, Thousand Oaks City Council members tonight will vote on extending a rent-control law through the fall of 1999. Most council members have already signaled their support for the measure, which limits yearly rent increases for the city's 980 mobile home owners to slightly below the inflation rate.
July 8, 1990
A landlord-sponsored initiative seeking to make a big dent in Santa Monica's tough rent control law has qualified for the November ballot, according to the City Clerk. The initiative would allow Santa Monica landlords to increase rent to market levels when tenants voluntarily vacate. The City Council has a competing measure on the ballot that would also loosen the rules of rent control, but with more limitations than the landlords' initiative.
September 15, 1988 | TRACY WILKINSON, Times Staff Writer
In a major blow to Santa Monica's strict rent control law, a state appeals court has ruled that the law cannot be used to deny a demolition permit to a landlord who wants to go out of the rental business. The strongly worded ruling makes it easier for landlords to tear down their buildings, takes away important authority wielded until now by the Rent Control Board, and appears to shift the battleground over rent control to the City Council.
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