California Won't Extend Eviction Moratorium

State lawmakers did not extend the state's eviction ban, which ends on September 30, putting the future of hundreds of thousands of households in jeopardy.

September 16, 2021, 11:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

San Francisco Apartments

Francesca Cappa / Flickr

According to California's state Assembly Housing chairperson, the state's "eviction protections will almost certainly not be extended once they expire after Sept. 30," reports Manuela Tobias.

While some lawmakers believe tenant protections should be extended, "the political appetite just isn’t there to act" before the end of the legislative session. "The current round of eviction protections were extended on June 25, just days before they were set to expire. At that point, Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon said he hoped the economy would be in full swing so that another moratorium would not be necessary."

Although unlikely, Governor Newsom "could still call a special legislative session to extend protections before the end of the month, or issue an executive order as he did at the beginning of the pandemic to pause court proceedings relating to evictions."

Landlord groups support the decision. According to Sid Lakireddy, a board member of the California Rental Housing Association, said "I think the legislators are starting to get it as well. This can’t go on at infinity."

Meanwhile, distribution of rental assistance funds still lags, and California families owe a cumulative $2.8 billion in back rent. "Existing law has some stopgaps that, in theory, should prevent the tsunami of evictions tenant advocates and researchers have predicted," but "tenant advocates are leery" of a stopgap that relies on courts. Francisco Dueñas, executive director of Housing Now!, a tenant advocacy group, says "a lot of people don’t respond to a court notice. They just move."

Thursday, September 9, 2021 in CALmatters

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