Sebastopol’s rent moratorium about to end


More than six months of rent control is coming to an end in the city of Sebastopol.

The city, which has capped annual rent increases at 3 percent since Nov. 1, will allow its rent moratorium to expire by the end of today, June 16.

This past Monday, Sebastopol’s housing subcommittee indicated the city would forgo another extention of its temporary rent control law.

That decision came roughly one week after voters in Santa Rosa, just a few miles east of Sebastopol, rejected rent control at the ballot box. The defeat of Measure C may have given elected officials in Sebastopol pause about moving ahead with their own policy proposal.

When the Santa Rosa Press Democrat asked Mayor Una Glass about  extending the moratorium, she said, “I’m not seeing a lot of will to do that.” Glass and Vice Mayor Patrick Slayter sit on the housing subcommittee.

Also at Monday’s subcommittee meeting, a number of local rental property owners said it is unfair to lay the city’s housing burden — a community-wide issue — at the feet of the 350 to 500 landlords whose properties are subject to rent control.

The issue of housing affordability will likely resurface in August, with the housing subcommittee making recommendations to the full council.

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