Santa Ana rejects rent control

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At the urging of the California Apartment Association, the Santa Ana City Council on Tuesday rejected rent control, opting instead to focus on more sensible alternatives.

The decision to steer clear of rent control came during a study session on the controversial housing policy.

During the study session, city staff presented an overview of the city’s housing situation, and guest speakers discussed the pros and cons of rent control.

CAA then provided the council with comments.  Tommy Thompson, CAA’s senior vice president for Southern California, called rent control “a proven disaster up and down the state,” as repoted in this Orange County Register article.

CAA also highlighted better alternatives to rent control for achieving housing affordability. The association further reiterated a desire to work with staff on those solutions.

During the council’s comment period, not one council member expressed support for rent control.

Instead, council members directed staff to provide a report on the city’s current rental housing policies and progress. This includes the city’s current Proactive Rental Enforcement Program and the working group it created to review conditions of the city’s rental housing stock. The council also asked staff to report back on the balance of funds used by the city to take possession of unfit rental housing properties.

Tuesday’s study session, which had been scheduled by an interim city manager, came in response to protesters demonstrating at a September council meeting as part of National Renter’s Rights Week.

In the weeks that followed the protest, CAA met several times with council members and continued its advocacy work through Tuesday morning. CAA will continue to communicate with city staff and make good on its promise to help Santa Ana find sensible solutions to its rental housing challenges.

Tagged: Orange County

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