Millions of dollars at stake for cities, counties on SB 91 decision


California cities and counties have one week to decide whether they’ll conform with the state funding allocation under SB 91, the latest legislative response to the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on tenants and landlords.

SB 91, signed into law last Friday, creates a framework to distribute $2.6 billion in federal funds to landlords who have lost rental income during the COVID-19 pandemic. Landlords with qualifying tenants can receive up to 80% of the rent owed if they agree to forgive the remaining 20%.

Local governments that decline to follow state rules established through the legislation, including the 80%/20% payment allocation, will leave a total of $1.2 billion on the table. The city of Los Angeles alone will leave behind $127.3 million if it doesn’t follow the state formula, while San Francisco is expected to leave behind $28.2 million. It’s in each local government’s best interest to follow the state rules, and they’ll have until Friday, Feb. 12, to let the state know they intend to do so.