Professor estimates rent control would cost Pacifica $2M annually

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An economics professor has concluded that a proposed rent control program in Pacifica could cost the city $2 million each year to implement.

Tom Means, a professor of economics at San Jose State University, shared this conclusion in an analysis of Measure C, the rent control proposal appearing on November’s ballot in Pacifica. Means, who serves on Mountain View’s newly formed Rental Housing Committee, prepared his report for the Coalition for Housing Equality.

“A more realistic budget for Measure C would fall between $1.5 million to $2 million,”  Means said in this news release. “If the budget was $2 million, it would imply a tax on property owners of $909 annually, per unit.”

Measure C would cap rent increases at 3.4 percent annually and implement eviction controls that mirror policies in San Francisco. The measure is modeled closely after rent control and eviction control ballot measures rejected by voters last year in San Mateo and Burlingame.

Pacifica has an annual budget of $10 million. Measure C would take up 20 percent of the city’s operating revenue.

Because of its costs, the measure could rob from the city of Pacifica’s general fund, taking valuable taxpayers’ money away from public safety, street repairs and beach clean-up efforts.

The California Apartment Association opposes Measure C, which would make it difficult to remove problem tenants from rental communities and allow up to 16 people in a two-bedroom apartment.

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Tagged: Tri-County

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