Category: CA Politics

Proposed Oakland Tenant Protection Ordinance Goes To City Council November 7th

Rebecca Kaplan
Rebecca Kaplan

Oakland At-Large Councilmember Rebecca Kaplan has authored a proposed tenant protection ordinance that passed the City’s Community and Economic Development Committee on Tuesday and is headed for the full City Council for discussion and possible action November 7th.

The short version of what this will do if passed is allow rental unit tenants who are being kicked out by bad landlords the chance to receive what are called “relocation payments” from that same bad landlord!

It adresses a major problem in Oakland and the SF Bay Area where an owner of a rental unit suddenly decides they want to give it to a relative. So, the bad landlord has been able to kick out the powerless tenant. That would stop if Kaplan’s law is approved by the Oakland City Council, November 7th.

Here’s the full staff report and ordinance, converted ‘as is’ without editorial changes:

CITY OF OAKLAND

SUBJECT:

AGENDA REPORT

Colleagues on the City Council and
Members of the Public

FROM: Councilmember At-Large
Rebecca Kaplan

Ordinance to Enact the Uniform
Residential Tenant Relocation
Ordinance

DATE: October 4, 2017

RECOMMENDATION
Councilmember Kaplan recommends that the City Council adopt an Ordinance to enact the
Uniform Residential Tenant Relocation Ordinance to: 1) establish a uniform schedule of
relocation payments; 2) extend relocation payments to tenants displaced by owner move-in
evictions; 3) extend relocation payments to tenants displaced by condominium conversions; and
4) conform existing Ellis Act and code compliance relocation amounts to those in the uniform
schedule.
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
This proposed legislation would add Article VII, the Uniform Residential Tenant Relocation
Ordinance, and Article VIII, Relocation Payments for Owner or Relative Move-Ins, to Chapter
8.22 of the Oakland Municipal Code (OMC). The purpose of Article VII and Article VIII is to
. establish a uniform amount of relocation payments for tenants displaced by no-fault evictions.
This proposed Ordinance extends relocation payments to tenants displaced for owner or relative
move-ins, as well as tenants who are displaced by condominium conversions. It sets notice
requirements, and the time and manner by.which the relocation payments must be made
It also creates a Uniform Schedule of Relocation Payments, and conforms existing Ellis Act and
code compliance1 relocation amounts to those in the uniform schedule. For a Qualifying
Relocation Event, this proposed Ordinance sets the relocation amount per tenant household as
follows:


$6,500 per studio/one bedroom units
$8,000 per two bedroom units
$9,875 per three or more bedroom units

1 This

proposed legislation conforms code compliance relocation amounts for permanent displacements
to the uniform schedule. The relocation amounts in the proposed uniform schedule represent the highest
amounts a tenant household can receive for temporary displacement (which is based on actual moving
and temporary housing expenses during the expected displacement period). (See OMC Section

15.60.110.)

Item:
CED Committee
October 24, 2017

Councilmember At-Large Rebecca Kaplan
Subject: Ordinance to Enact the Uniform Residential Tenant Relocation Ordinance
Date: October 4, 2017
Page 2 of 4
Tenant households in rental units that include lower income, elderly or disabled tenants, and/or
minor children shall be entitled to a single additional relocation payment of two thousand five
hundred dollars ($2,500.00) per unit from the owner.
Under this proposed Ordinance, the relocation payments specified above shall increase
annually on July 1st in accordance with the CPI Adjustment as calculated in OMC subsection
8.22.070(B)(3).2 The first CPI adjustment (at 2.3%) took effect on July 1, 2017 (not reflected in
the numbers above).
This proposed Ordinance would impose criminal, administrative, and civil penalties for violating,
or attempting to violate, the provisions of the Chapter, and includes civil remedies.
BACKGROUND I LEGISLATIVE HISTORY
Under Oakland’s Just Cause Ordinance, a landlord may not evict a tenant without cause, but
may evict a tenant who is not at fault if: the owner (or owner’s relative) seeks to move in to the
property (OMC Sections 8.22.360(A)(8 & 9)); the owner seeks to make code compliance repairs
(OMC Section 8.22.360(A)(10)); or, the owner seeks to remove the property from the market in
accordance with the Ellis Act (OMC Sections 8.22.360(A)(11)).
Currently, the City of Oakland requires relocation payments for Ellis and code compliance
displacements. OMC Section 8.22.450 provides for relocation payments for tenants displaced
because of an owner’s withdrawal from the rental market in accordance with the Ellis Act. OMC
Section 15.60 provides for relocation payments for tenants displaced because of code
compliance repairs.
This proposed Ordinance would extend relocation payments to the final category of no-fault
evictions under the Just Cause Ordinance: owner move-ins. Like tenants displaced under Ellis
or for code compliance repairs, tenants displaced due to owner move-ins, who are not at fault,
will be forced to incur substantial costs to relocate to new housing, and deserve assistance.
This proposed Ordinance would also extend relocation payments to tenants displaced by
condominium conversions. For this category of relocation payments, tenants who are displaced
for code compliance repairs shall be paid relocation payments at no less than the amounts
pursuant to OMC Section 15.60. The reason for this is because OMC Section 15.60 governs
tenant displacement due to code compliance repairs, and makes a distinction between
permanent displacement and temporary displacement. The relocation payment amount for
permanent displacement is governed by the uniform relocation payment schedule created by
this proposed legislation (see OMC Section 15.60.110(A)). The relocation payment amount for
temporary displacement is based on actual moving and temporary housing expenses during the
expected displacement period (see OMC Section 15.60.110(B)), up to the amounts listed in the
uniform relocation payment schedule.

2 The

CPI adjustment increase applies to all the relocation payment amounts except for the enhanced
$2,500.00 payment for tenant households that include lower income, elderly or disabled tenants, and/or
minor children, which is not indexed for inflation.
Item:
CED Committee
October 24, 2017

Councilmember At-Large Rebecca Kaplan
Subject: Ordinance to Enact the Uniform Residential Tenant Relocation Ordinance
Date: October 4, 2017
Page 3 of 4
Tenants displaced by condominium conversions for any other reason (other than code
compliance repairs), unless evicted for tenant fault, shall be paid relocation payments at not less
than the amounts pursuant to the uniform relocation payment schedule created by this proposed
legislation (OMC Section 8.22.820). As with tenants displaced due to owner move-ins, tenants
displaced due to condominium conversions, who are not at fault, will be forced to incur
substantial costs to relocate to new housing, and deserve assistance.
As stated above, this proposed Ordinance also creates a uniform schedule of relocation
payments for no-fault evictions, set at the amounts established by the Ellis Act Ordinance,
previously approved by the City. The reason for this uniformity is to streamline the process for
tenants and landlords alike, and because tenants displaced for any type of no-fault eviction face
the same challenges associated with finding new temporary or permanent housing.
ANALYSIS
Rationale for Extending Relocation Payments to Tenants Displaced Due to Owner/Relative
Move-Ins and Condominium Conversions
Just like tenants who are displaced for Ellis or code compliance evictions, tenants who are
displaced in Oakland due to owner/relative move-ins and condominium conversions will be
forced to incur substantial costs to relocate to new housing. These costs include, but are not
limited to, move-in costs to a new unit, actual moving costs, new utility hookups, payment for
temporary housing while new permanent housing is sought, and lost work time seeking housing.
According to a 2017 Mid-Year Rent Trends Report from Abodo, an apartment listings website,
Oakland ranks the seventh costliest rental market in the country, with one-bedroom apartments
typically renting for $2,025.00. Due to Oakland’s exorbitant housing prices, many displaced
tenants would be unable to relocate in the City if relocation payments are not authorized, and
face an increased risk of homelessness. The impacts of these no-fault evictions are particularly
difficult for senior, disabled, and low-income tenants and tenants with minor children.
Because tenants displaced for no-fault evictions suffer similar hardships, including an increased
risk of homelessness, they should all be eligible for relocation payments designed to mitigate
these hardships, and keep Oakland residents safe and sheltered.
Rationale for Establishing a Uniform Schedule of Relocation Payments
Currently, tenants are eligible for relocation payments for Ellis Act and code compliance
displacements. This proposed legislation would extend relocation payments to tenants
displaced by owner/relative move-ins and condominium conversions.
With four categories of relocation payments, it is helpful for landlords and tenants to be able to
refer to a uniform schedule. Having information about relocation payments in one place is more
accessible, clear, and instructive for all parties. Moreover, it makes sense that the payments
would be uniform, because each tenant household displaced by no fault of their own faces the
same hardships associated with relocation.

Item:
CED Committee
October 24, 2017

Councilmember At-Large Rebecca Kaplan
Subject: Ordinance to Enact the Uniform Residential Tenant Relocation Ordinance
Date: October 4, 2017
Page 4 of 4
For example, tenants who find acceptable new housing commonly find themselves required to
pay substantial expenses including moving costs, move-in costs, new utility hook-ups, payments
for temporary housing, lost work time seeking housing, and increased rent due to vacancy
decontrol. Regardless of the reason for the displacement, these no-fault tenants will be facing
similar expenses, which the proposed uniform schedule of relocation payments has been
designed to address.
COORDINATION
The legislation was created by the Office of Councilmember Kaplan in coordination with the City
Attorney’s Office.
SUSTAINABLE OPPORTUNITIES
Economic: This ordinance intends to help tenants manage the economic burdens associated
with displacement due to no-fault evictions.
Social Equity: This ordinance intends to promote social equity by helping impacted Oakland
tenants afford new housing and avoid displacement.
ACTION REQUESTED OF THE CITY COUNCIL
Adopt an Ordinance to enact the Uniform Residential Tenant Relocation Ordinance to: 1)
establish a uniform schedule of relocation payments; 2) extend relocation payments to tenants
displaced by owner move-in evictions; 3) extend relocation payments to tenants displaced by
condominium conversions; and 4) conform existing Ellis Act and code compliance relocation
amounts to those in the uniform schedule.
For questions regarding this report, please contact Laura Holtan, Policy and Legislative Director
for Councilmember Kaplan, at 510-238-7081.
Respectfully submitted,

Councilmember At-Large Rebecca Kaplan
Reviewed by:
Richard lllgen, Supervising Deputy City
Attorney and Kent Qian, Deputy City Attorney
Prepared by:
Laura Holtan, Policy and Legislative Director
Office of Councilmember Rebecca Kaplan
Item:
CED Committee
October 24, 2017

fr OCT-ifr PM g;||

APPROVED AS TO FORIVh^ND LEGALITY

INTRODUCED BY COUNCILMEMBER KAPLAN

i

CITY ATTORNEY’S OFFI’

OAKLAND CITY COUNCIL
ORDINANCE NO.

C.M.S.

AN ORDINANCE TO ENACT THE UNIFORM RESIDENTIAL
TENANT RELOCATION ORDINANCE TO (1) ESTABLISH AN
UNIFORM SCHEDULE OF RELOCATION PAYMENTS; (2) TO
EXTEND RELOCATION PAYMENTS TO TENANTS DISPLACED BY
OWNER MOVE-IN EVICTIONS; (3) TO EXTEND RELOCATION
PAYMENTS TO TENANTS DISPLACED BY CONDOMINIUM
CONVERSIONS; AND (4) CONFORM EXISTING ELLIS ACT AND
CODE COMPLIANCE RELOCATION AMOUNTS TO THOSE IN THE
UNIFORM SCHEDULE
WHEREAS, all major California rent-controlled jurisdictions surveyed (including
Los Angeles, San Francisco, Berkeley, Santa Monica, and West Hollywood) require
relocation payments for no-fault evictions, such as owner move-in evictions and
condominium conversions; and
WHEREAS, tenants who do not have adequate funds to move and who are
forced to move pursuant to no-fault eviction notice face displacement and great
hardship; and
WHEREAS, tenants evicted in Oakland are forced to incur substantial costs
related to new housing including, but not limited to, move-in costs to a new home,
moving costs, new utility hook-ups, payments for temporary housing, and lost work
time seeking housing; and
WHEREAS, the impacts of these no-fault evictions are particularly significant
on elderly, disabled, and low-income tenants and tenants with minor children,
justifying an additional payment for households with these tenants; and
WHEREAS, tenants who find acceptable new housing commonly find
themselves required to pay substantial costs related to new housing including, but not
limited to, move-in costs to a new home, moving costs, new utility hook-ups, payments
for temporary housing, lost work time seeking housing, and increased rent due to
vacancy decontrol; and

WHEREAS, tenants who find acceptable new housing commonly find
themselves required to pay substantial move-in costs of first and last month’s rent plus
a security deposit equal to one month’s rent; and
WHEREAS, the City Council recently approved these same relocation fee
amounts for evictions pursuant to the Ellis Act, another type of no-fault eviction, and
establish a schedule for relocation payments according to unit size; and
WHEREAS, the City Council finds that the proposed expansion in coverage of
the relocation payments for no-fault evictions is justified and necessary for impacted
Tenants to find new housing and avoid displacement; and
WHEREAS, the City Council finds that the relocation amounts for owner moveins and condominium conversions should be set at the amounts establish by the Ellis
Act Ordinance approved by the City; and
WHEREAS, with the expansion in coverage of relocation payments, the City
Council finds it justified to establish an uniform schedule of relocation payments for nofault evictions; and
WHEREAS, this action is exempt from the California Environmental Quality
Act (“CEQA”) pursuant to, but not limited to, the following CEQA Guidelines: § 15378
(regulatory actions), § 15061 (b)(3) (no significant environmental impact), and § 15183
(consistent with the general plan and zoning); and

NOW, THEREFORE, THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF OAKLAND DOES
ORDAIN AS FOLLOWS:
SECTION 1. Addition of Article VII to Chapter 8.22 of the Oakland Municipal Code.
That the City Council hereby adopts the addition of Section 8.22.800 et. seq. as Article VII
of Chapter 8.22 of the Oakland Municipal Code, as follows.
Article VII – Uniform Residential Tenant Relocation Ordinance
8.22.800 – Purpose
The purpose of this section is to establish an uniform amount for relocation payments
for tenants displaced by no-fault evictions.
8.22.810 – Definitions
“Disabled” means a person with a disability, as defined in Section 12955.3 of the
Government Code.
“Elderly” means a person sixty-two (62) years old or older.

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“Lower-income Tenant Household” means Tenant Households whose income is not
more than that permitted for lower income households, as defined by California Health
and Safety Code Section 50079.5.
“Minor child(ren)” means a person(s) who is eighteen (18) years or younger at the time
the notice of withdrawal of accommodations is served on the program.
“Owner” means an owner of record of the real property on which the rent units to be
withdrawn are located.
“Qualifying Relocation Event” means any event or vacancy that triggers a Tenant’s right
to relocation payments under the Oakland Municipal Code.
“Rental Unit” means a dwelling space in the city containing a separate bathroom,
kitchen, and living area, including a single-family dwelling or unit in a multifamily or
multipurpose dwelling, or a unit in a condominium or cooperative housing project, or a
unit in a structure that is being used for residential uses whether or not the residential
use is a conforming use permitted under the Oakland Municipal Code or Oakland
Planning Code, which is hired, rented, or leased to a household within the meaning of
California Civil Code Section 1940. This definition applies to any dwelling space that is
actually used for residential purposes, including live-work spaces, whether or not the
residential use is legally permitted.
“Room” means an unsubdivided portion of the interior of a residential building in the city
which is used for the purpose of sleeping, and is occupied by a Tenant Household for at
least thirty (30) consecutive days. This includes, but is not limited to, a single room
occupancy (SRO) living space.a rooming unit or efficiency unit located in a residential
hotel, as that term is defined in accordance with California Health and Safety Code
Section 50519. This definition applies to any space that is actually used for residential
purposes whether or not the residential use is legally permitted. For purposes of
determining the amount of relocation payments, a room is the equivalent of a studio
apartment.
“Tenant” means a Tenant as that term is defined in O.M.C. 8.22.020 and also includes a
lessee.
“Tenant Household” means one or more individuals Tenants who rent or lease a Rental
Unit or Room as their primary residence and who share living expenses
accommodations. In the case where an individual Room is rented to multiple Tenants
under separate agreements, each individual Tenant of such Room shall constitute a
“Tenant Household” for purposes of this article.
8.22.820 Amount of relocation payments
A. Tenant Households who are required to move as a result of a Qualifying Relocation
Event shall be entitled to a relocation payment from the Owner in the sum of six
thousand five hundred dollars ($6,500.00) per unit for studios and one-bedroom
apartments; eight thousand dollars ($8,000.00) per unit for two-bedroom apartments;
-3-

and nine thousand eight hundred seventy-five dollars ($9,875.00) per unit for units
with three or more bedrooms. The payment shall be divided equally among all
Tenants occupying the Rental Unit at the time of service on the Tenants of the notice
of termination of tenancy.
B. Tenant Households in Rental Units that include lower income, elderly or disabled
Tenants, and/or minor children shall be entitled to a single additional relocation
payment of two thousand five hundred dollars ($2,500.00) per unit from the Owner. If
a household qualifies for this additional payment, the payment shall be divided
equally among eligible (lower-income, elderly, disabled, parents/guardians of minor
children) Tenants.
C. In the case of temporary relocations under O.M.C. 15.60.110(B), the amounts in
paragraphs A-B shall be a cap on relocation payments.
D. The relocation payments specified in subsection 8.22.820(A) shall increase annually
on July 1 in accordance with the CPI Adjustment as calculated in OMC subsection
8.22.070(B)(3). The first increase shall take place on July 1, 2017.
SECTION 2. Addition of Article VStl to Chapter 8.22 of the Oakland Municipal Code.
That the City Council hereby adopts the addition of Section 8.22.850 et. seq. as Article VIII
of Chapter 8.22 of the Oakland Municipal Code, as follows.
Article VIII – Relocation Payments for Owner or Relative Move-Iras
8.22.850 – Relocation Payments for Owner or Relative Move-Ins
A. Applicability. An Owner who evicts a Tenant pursuant to O.M.C. Section
8.22.360(A)(8)-(9) or where a Tenant vacates following a notice or other
communication stating the Owner’s intent to seek recovery of possession of the unit
under any of these O.M.C. Sections must provide relocation payment under this
Section. Relocation payment procedures pursuant to code compliance or Ellis Act
evictions will be governed by the Code Compliance Relocation Ordinance and the
Ellis Act Ordinance.
B. The property Owner shall be responsible for providing relocation payments, in the
amounts specified in Section 8.22.820, to an eligible Tenant Household in the form
and manner prescribed under this article and any rules and regulations adopted
under this article.
C. Time for payment
1. The Owner must pay the Tenant half of the relocation payment provided for in
Section 8.22.820(A) when the termination notice is given to the household and
the remaining half when the Tenant vacates the unit provided that the Tenant
agrees, in writing, not to contest an unlawful detainer based on the notice to
terminate tenancy for the Owner or relative moving in to the Tenant’s Rental Unit.
If the Tenant does not so agree, then the entirety of the relocation payment is not
due unless the Owner prevails in the unlawful detainer. If the Owner prevails in
the unlawful detainer, the relocation payment must be paid to the Tenant prior to
the Owner seeking a writ of possession for the Tenant to vacate the withdrawn
unit.

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2. The Owner must pay the Tenant the additional payment provided for in Section
8.22.820(B) within fifteen (15) days of the Tenant’s notice of eligibility or the
Tenant supplying documentation of the Tenant’s eligibility.
D. Failure to make the relocation payments in the manner and within such times as
prescribed in this Section is not a defense to an unlawful detainer action. However, if an
Owner fails to make the relocation payment as prescribed, the Tenant may file an action
against the Owner and, if the Tenant is found eligible for the relocation payments, the
Tenant will be entitled to recover the amount of the relocation payments plus an equal
amount as damages and the Tenant’s attorney’s fees. Should the Owner’s failure to
make the payments as prescribed be found to be in bad faith, the Tenant shall be
entitled to the relocation payments plus an additional amount of three times the amount
of the relocation payments and the Tenant’s attorney’s fees.
8.22.860 – Violation – Penalty.
A.
Criminal Penalties
1.
Infraction. Any property Owner violating any provision or failing to comply with
any requirements of this article shall be guilty of an infraction for the first offense.
2.
Misdemeanor. Any property Owner violating any provision or failing to comply
with any requirements of this article multiple times shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.
B.
Administrative Penalties
1.
Administrative citation. Any person violating any provision or failing to comply
with any requirements of this article may be assessed an administrative citation
pursuant to O.M.C. Chapter 1.12 for the first offense.
2.
Civil penalties. Any person violating any provision or failing to comply with any
requirements of this article multiple times may be assessed a civil penalty for each
violation pursuant to O.M.C. Chapter 1.08.
C.
Violation includes attempted violation. In addition to failing to comply with this
article, it is also violation to attempt to have a Tenant accept terms that fail to comply
with this article, including any of the following actions:
1.
Asking the Tenant to accept an agreement that pays less than the required
relocation payments;
2.
Asking the Tenant to accept an agreement that waives the Tenant’s rights; or
3.
Upon a return to the unit, asking the Tenant to pay a higher rent than is permitted
under this article or O.M.C. Chapter 8.22.
8.22.870 – Civil Remedies.
A.
Any person or organization who believes that a property Owner or Tenant
Household has violated provisions of this article or the program rules and regulations
adopted pursuant to this article shall have the right to file an action for injunctive relief
and/or actual damages against such party. Whoever is found to have violated this article
shall be subject to appropriate injunctive relief and shall be liable for damages, costs
and reasonable attorneys’ fees. Treble damages shall be awarded for a property
Owner’s willful failure to comply with the payment obligation established under this
article.

-5-

B.
Nothing herein shall be deemed to interfere with the right of a property Owner to
file an action against a Tenant or non-Tenant third party for the damage done to said
Owner’s property. Nothing herein is intended to limit the damages recoverable by any
party through a private action.
C.
The city attorney may bring an action against a property Owner that the city
attorney believes has violated provisions of this article or any program rules and
regulations adopted pursuant to this article. Such an action may include injunctive relief
and recovery of damages, penalties– including any administrative citations or civil
penalties- treble damages, and costs and reasonable attorney’s fees. The city attorney
has sole discretion to determine whether to bring such an action.
SECTION 3. Modification of Section 8.22.450 of the Oakland Municipal Code.
Section 8.22.450 of the Oakland Municipal Code is hereby amended to read as follows
(additions are shown as double underline and deletions are shown as stfikethrough):
8.22.450 – Relocation payments.
A. Tenant Households who are required to move as a result of the Owner’s withdrawal
of the accommodation from rent or lease shall be entitled to a relocation payment
from the Owner equal to Relocation Payment amounts set forth in O.M.C.
8.22.820(A). in the sum of six thousand five hundred dollars ($6.500.001 per unit for
studios and one-bedroom apartments; eight thousand dollars ($8,000.00) per unit for
two-bedroom apartments; and nine thousand eight hundred seventy five dollars
($9,875.00) per unit for units with three or more bedrooms. The payment shall be
divided equally among all Tenants occupying the Rental Unit at the time of service
on the Tenants of the notice of intent to withdraw the unit from rent or lease. Once
notice of withdrawal of the accommodation from rent or lease has been given to the
Tenant, the Owner is obligated to make the relocation payments.
B. Tenant Households in Rental Units withdrawn from the residential market that
include lower income, elderly or disabled Tenants, and/or minor children shall be
entitled to a single additional relocation payment equal to the additionaTReTocation
Payment amounts set forth in O.M.C. 8.22.820CBV of two thousand five hundred
dollars ($2,500.00) per unit from the owner. If a household qualifies for this
additional payment, the payment shall be divided equally among eligible (lowerincome, elderly, disabled, parents/guardians of minor children) Tenants.
C. A Tenant whose household qualifies for the additional payment may request it from
the Owner, provided the Tenant gives written notice of his or her entitlement to such
payments to the Owner within sixty (60) days of the date of delivery to the Rent
Adjustment Program of the Withdrawal Documents.
D. An Owner who, reasonably and in good faith, believes that a Tenant does not qualify
for the additional payment may request documentation from the Tenant
demonstrating the Tenant’s income qualification. Such documentation may not
include any document that is protected as private or confidential under any state,
local, or federal law. The Owner’s request must be made within fifteen (15) days
after receipt of the Tenant’s notification of eligibility for the additional payment. The
Tenant has thirty (30) days following receipt of the Owner’s request for
documentation to submit documentation. The Owner must keep the documents
submitted by the Tenant confidential unless there is litigation or administrative
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proceedings regarding the Tenant’s eligibility for relocation payments or the
documents must be produced in response to a subpoena or court order, in which
case the Tenant may seek an order from the court or administrative body to keep the
documents confidential. Examples of the types of evidence that may be used to
present a claim that a household is entitled to an extra payment based on a Tenant’s
disability status include evidence that a Tenant has a qualifying disability may be in
the form of a statement from a treating physician or other appropriate health care
provider authorized to provide treatment, such as a psychologist. A Tenant may also
submit evidence of a medical determination from another forum, such as Social
Security or worker’s compensation, so long as it includes the fact that the Tenant
has a disability and its probable duration.
E. Time for payment.
1. The Owner must pay the Tenant half of the relocation payment provided for in
Section 8.22.450(A) when the termination notice is given to the household and
the remaining half when the Tenant vacates the unit provided that the Tenant
agrees, in writing, not to contest an unlawful detainer based on the notice to
terminate tenancy for the withdrawal of the Tenant’s Rental Unit. If the Tenant
does not so agree, then the entirety of the relocation payment is not due unless
the Owner prevails in the unlawful detainer. If the Owner prevails in the unlawful
detainer, the relocation payment must be paid to the Tenant prior to the Owner
seeking a writ of possession for the Tenant to vacate the withdrawn unit.
2. The Owner must pay the Tenant the additional payment provided for in Section
8.22.450(B) within fifteen (15) days of the Tenant’s notice of eligibility or the
Tenant supplying documentation of the Tenant’s eligibility.
F. Failure to make the relocation payments in the manner and within such times as
prescribed in this Section 8.22.450 is not a defense to an unlawful detainer action.
However, if an Owner fails to make the relocation payment as prescribed, the
Tenant may file an action against the Owner and, if the Tenant is found eligible for
the relocation payments, the Tenant will be entitled to recover the amount of the
relocation payments plus an equal amount as damages and the Tenant’s attorney’s
fees. Should the Owner’s failure to make the payments as prescribed be found to be
in bad faith, the Tenant shall be entitled to the relocation payments plus an
additional amount of three times the amount of the relocation payments and the
Tenant’s attorney’s fees.
G. A Tenant who is eligible for relocation payments under state or federal law, is not
also entitled to relocation under this section. A Tenant who is also eligible for
relocation under the City of Oakland’s code enforcement relocation program (O.M.C.
Chapter 15.60), must elect for either relocation payments under this section or
O.M.C. Chapter 15.60, and may not collect relocation payments under both.
H. The regulations may provide procedures for escrowing disputed relocation funds.
—The relocation payments specified in subsection 8.22.450(A) shall increase annually
on July 1 in accordance with the CPI Adjustment as calculated in OMC subsection
8.22.070(B)(3).

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SECTION 4. Modification off Section 15.60.110 of the Oakland Municipal
Code. Section 15.60.110 of the Oakland Municipal Code are hereby amended to read
as follows (additions are shown as double underline and deletions are shown as
strikethrough):
15.60.110 – Amount of relocation payments.
A.
Permanent Displacement. An eligible Tenant Household who will experience permanent
displacement as defined above shall receive a monetary relocation payment from the
property Owner equal to the Relocation Payment amounts set forth in O.M.C.
8.22.450820, including the additional payments for Tenant Households that include
lower income, elderly or disabled Tenants, and/or minor children as set forth in O.M.C.
8.22.4§0S2Q(B).
a.
A Tenant whose household qualifies for the additional payment as set forth iri O.M.C.
8.22.450820(B) may request it from the Owner, provided the Tenant gives written notice
of his or her entitlement to such payments to the Owner within thirty (30) days following
the Tenant Household’s actual vacation of the unit or room.
b.
An Owner who, reasonably and in good faith, believes that a Tenant does not qualify for
the additional payment, may request documentation from the Tenant demonstrating the
Tenant’s qualification. Such documentation may not include any document that is
protected as private or confidential under and state, local or federal law. The Owner’s
request must be made within fifteen (15) days after receipt of the Tenant’s notification of
eligibiIity for the additional payment. The Tenant has thirty (30) days following receipt of
the Owner’s request for documentation to submit documentation. The Owner must keep
the documents submitted by the Tenant confidential unless there is litigation or
administrative proceedings regarding the Tenant’s eligibility for relocation payments or
the documents must be produced in response to a subpoena or court order, in which
case the Tenant may seek an order from the court or administrative body to keep the
documents confidential. Examples of the types of evidence that may be used to present
a claim that a household is entitled to an extra payment based on a Tenant’s disability
status may be in the form of a statement from a treating physician or other appropriate
health care provided authorized to provide treatment, such as a psychologist. A Tenant
may also submit evidence of a medical determination from another forum, such as
Social Security or worker’s compensation, so long as it includes the fact that the Tenant
has a disability and its probable duration.
B.
Temporary displacement. An eligible Tenant Household who will experience temporarily
displacement as defined above shall receive monetary relocation payment or payments
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from the property Owner to cover the Tenant Household’s actual and reasonable
moving expenses and temporary housing accommodations costs directly incurred as a
result of the temporary displacement. “Moving expenses” shall include the cost of
removing, transporting, and/or storing the Tenant Household’s personal property during
the displacement period, and “temporary housing accommodations costs” shall include
the cost of rental payments and hotel or motel payments during the displacement
period. In no event shall the property Owner be liable for making payments in excess of
the amount the Tenant Household would receive in the case of permanent displacement
as set forth in subsection A of this section.
C.
Immediate Vacation. When the condition of a Room or Rental Unit is a danger to the
public health and safety such that the city requires immediate vacation, i.e., vacation
with less than thirty (30) days advance notice either from the city or from the property
Owner to the Tenant Household of the need to vacate, an eligible Tenant Household
displaced from such a room or unit shall be entitled to an additional payment from the
property Owner in the amount of five hundred dollars ($500.00), in addition to the
amounts set forth above. Such additional payment is intended to compensate the
Tenant Household for the additional costs associated with short-notice moves and the
added inconvenience of such moves.

D.
Payments for relocation shall not be considered by the city as income or assets for any
government benefits program.
SECTION 5. Modification of Sections 16.36.030 and 16.36.050 of the
Oakland Municipal Code. Sections 16.36.030 and 16.36.050 of the Oakland Municipal
Code are hereby amended to read as follows (additions are shown as double underline
and deletions are shown as strikethrough):

16.36.030 – NOTICE TO PROSPECTIVE TENANTS.
Commencing at a date not less than sixty (60) days prior to the filing of a tentative map
or tentative parcel map, the subdivider shall give notice of such filing, in the form shown
below, to each person applying after such date for rental of a unit in the building to be
converted. This notice must be given to the prospective Tenant prior to the acceptance
of any rent or deposit from said prospective Tenant.
The notice shall read as follows:
To the prospective occupant(s) of
(Address)

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The owner(s) of this building, at (address), has filed or plans to file an application
for a (tentative map or tentative parcel map) with the city to convert this building
to a (condominium, community apartment, or stock cooperative project). No units
may be sold in this building unless the conversion is approved by the City efof
Oakland and, if five or more units are involved, until after a public report is issued
by the DepartmentBureau of Real Estate. If you become a Tenant of this
building, you shall be given notice of each hearing for which notice is required
pursuant to Government Code Sections 66451.3 and 66452.5 of the Government
Code, and you have the right to appear and the right to be heard at any such
hearing.
(signature of owner or owner’s agent)

(date)
I have received this notice on:
(date)
(prospective Tenant’s signature)
Prospective Tenants shall also receive all accompanying documents described in
Section 16.36.020 and all documents set forth in Sections 16.36.040 and 16.36.050.
If the subdivider fails to give timely notice pursuant to this section, he or she shall pay to
each prospective Tenant (1) who becomes a Tenant and who was entitled to such
notices and (2) who does not purchase his or her unit pursuant to Section 16.36.040
and vacates, an amount equal to the amounts set forth below:
a. Tenants who vacate for Code Compliance repairs shall be paid relocation
payments pursuant to O.M.C. chapter 15.60.
b. Tenants who vacate for anv other reason, unless evicted for Tenant faultshall be paid relocation payments in amounts pursuant to O.M.C. Section
8.22.820. The owner shall make the payment directly to an eligible Tenant
Household no later than ten davs before the expected vacation date. If
less than ten davs’ advance notice of vacation is given, then the payment
bv the owner to the Tenant Household is due no later than the actual time
of vacation.
c. A Tenant who is also eligible for relocation under the Citv of Oakland’s
code compliance relocation program (O.M.C. Chapter 15.60V must elect

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for either relocation payments under this section or O.M.C. Chapter 15.60.
and mav not receive relocation payments under both.
d. A Tenant who is also eligible for relocation assistance under Section
16.36.050 (Preliminary Tenant Assistance Program^ must elect for either
relocation payments under this section or Section 16.36.050. and mav not
receive relocation payments under both.
sum-ef the followm^A. Actual-moviftg-expeflses-ifrnwred when moving-ffem-tfre subject property, but not4o
exeeed a maximum-amount, if any, that-is specified in thermal Tenant assistance
ftfogfam, as set fofth-ift-Seetiofl-4^-.^§TQ80, or five hwdfe4-4ollars ($500.00), whiokever
is-greater; and
Br-The first month’s rent on the-Tenant’s new rentaUmiMf-any, immediately after
fflovmg-from the subject propeftyr-kut not to exceed five hundred dollars ($500.00).
16.36.050 – Tenant rights and the preliminary Tenant assistance program
With regard to any conversion as defined in Section 16.36.010, each Tenant shall have
the following minimum rights which shall be set forth in a notice of Tenant rights.
1. After receipt of this notice, each Tenant will be entitled to terminate his or her lease
or rental agreement without any penalty upon notifying the subdivider in writing thirty
(30) days in advance of such termination; provided, however, that this requirement
shall cease upon notice to the Tenant of the abandonment of subdivided efforts to
—convert thebuilding^
2. No Tenant’s rent will be increased from the date of issuance of this notice until at
least twelve (12) months after the date subdivider files the tentative map or tentative
parcel map with the city; provided, however, that this requirement shall cease upon
abandonment of subdivider’s efforts to convert the building.
3. No remodeling of the interior of Tenant-occupied units shall begin until at least thirty
(30) days after issuance of the final subdivision public report or, if one is not issued,
after the start of subdivider’s sales program. (For purposes of this chapter, the start
of subdivider’s sales program shall be defined as the start of Tenants’ ninety (90)
days first-right-of-refusal period set forth below.)
4. Each Tenant shall have an exclusive right to contract for the purchase of his or her
unit or, at the Tenant’s option, any other available unit in the building upon the same
or more favorable terms and conditions that such units will be initially offered to the
general public, such right to run for at least ninety (90) days from the issuance of the
final subdivision public report or, if one is not issued, from the start of subdivider’s
sales program.
5. Each Tenant shall have a right of occupancy of at least one hundred eighty (180)
days from the issuance of the final subdivision public report or, if one is not issued,
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from the start of subdivider’s sales program, prior to termination of tenancy due to
conversion.
6. Tenants in units containing a Tenant sixty-two (62) years or older shall be provided a
lifetime lease on their unit or, at Tenant’s option, on any other available unit in the
building. Such leases, to commence no later than the date of issuance of the final
subdivision public report, or, if one is not issued, no later than the start of
subdivider’s sales program, shall be subject to the following conditions:
a. Tenants shall have the option of cancelling the lease at any time upon thirty
(30) days’ written notice to the owner.
b. Tenants cannot be evicted except for just cause.
c. Right of occupancy shall be nontransferable.
d. The first year’s base monthly rent for the unit shall be set at no more than the
rent existing on the unit one year prior to the filing of the tentative map or
tentative parcel map increased by no more than seventy-five (75) percent of
the percentage increase in the residential rent component of the Consumer
Price Index for All Urban Consumers in the San Francisco-Oakland
Metropolitan Area (Bay Area Rental CPI) from the date one year prior to the
filing of the tentative map or tentative parcel map to the effective date of the
lifetime lease.
e. Subsequent rent adjustments, if any, may be made no sooner than one year
from the effective date of the lifetime lease, shall be limited to no more than
one per year, and the percentage increase in the Bay Area Rental CPI for the
most recent twelve (12) month period.
f. Notwithstanding the above, no rent increase shall exceed any rent increase
guidelines adopted by the city.
g. Except as provided hereinabove, terms and conditions of the lifetime lease
shall be the same as those contained in Tenant’s current lease or rental
agreement.
The preliminary Tenant assistance program, as set forth in subsection B of this
section, shall make provision for the above minimum rights on the terms set forth
above or on terms more favorable to the Tenant.
B. The subdivider’s Preliminary Tenant Assistance Program (PTAP) shall consist of
at least two parts: efforts to minimize Tenant displacement, and Tenant relocation
assistance.
1. In the first part of the PTAP, subdivider shall describe those incentives and
inducements that would increase the potential for, and ability of, Tenants to become
owners in the conversion. Subdivider shall also include actions and procedures to
enable hard-to-relocate Tenants to remain as Tenants.
2. The second part of the PTAP shall include all relocation and moving assistance
and information to be provided to each Tenant and all steps the subdivider will take
to ensure the successful relocation of each Tenant in the event that conversion
takes place and the Tenant chooses not to purchase a unit or remain as a Tenant.

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a. Tenants who resided in the unit prior to the filing of the tentative map or tentative
parcel map and who vacate for Code Compliance repairs shall be paid relocation
payments at no less than the amounts pursuant to O.M.C. chapter 15.60.
b. Tenants who resided in the unit prior to the filing of the tentative map or tentative
parcel map and vacate for any other reason, unless evicted for Tenant fault, shall be
paid relocation payments at not less than the amounts pursuant to O.M.C. Section
8.22.820. The Owner shall make the payment directly to an eligible Tenant
Household no later than ten davs before the expected vacation date. If less than ten
davs’ advance notice of vacation is given, then the payment bv the Owner to the
Tenant Household is due no later than the actual time of vacation.
For the purpose of this paragraph, the Tenant is not evicted for Tenant fault if (1) the
Tenant vacates within 120 davs after the effective date of a rent increase notice of
more than 10 percent: and (2) the rent increase notice is issued within one year after
the issuance of the final subdivision public report on the conversion of a building with
five or more units or the start of the sales program in a building of four units or less.
c. A Tenant who is also eligible for relocation assistance under Section 16.36.030
must elect for either relocation payments under this section or Section 16.36.030.
and mav not receive relocation payments under both.
In both parts of the PTAP, subdivider shall give particular attention to specific steps
that will be taken to assist the elderly, disabled, and other Tenants who may
encounter difficulty in finding new quarters.
SECTION 6. Severability. If any section, subsection, sentence, clause or
phrase of this Ordinance is for any reason held to be invalid or unconstitutional by
decision of any court of competent jurisdiction, such decision shall not affect the validity
of the remaining portions of the Chapter. The City Council hereby declares that it would
have passed this Ordinance and each section, subsection, clause or phrase thereof
irrespective of the fact that one or more other sections, subsections, clauses or phrases
may be declared invalid or unconstitutional.
SECTION 7. Effective Date. This ordinance shall become effective
immediately on final adoption if it receives six or more affirmative votes; otherwise it
shall become effective upon the seventh day after final adoption.
SECTION 8. This action is exempt from the California Environmental Quality Act
(“CEQA”) pursuant to, but not limited to, the following CEQA Guidelines: § 15378
(regulatory actions), § 15061(b)(3) (no significant environmental impact), and § 15183
(consistent with the general plan and zoning).
SECTION 9. Grandparented relocation payments. The Ordinance
amendments provided for in this Ordinance shall not apply to any relocation payments

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for which a unit was vacated, or for which a notice to vacate was issued to Tenant, prior
to adoption of the Ordinance by City Council.

IN COUNCIL, OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA,
PASSED BY THE FOLLOWING VOTE:
AYES – BROOKS, CAMPBELL-WASHINGTON, GALLO, GIBSON MCELHANEY, GUILLEN, KALB, KAPLAN AND
PRESIDENT REID
NOESABSENT ABSTENTION ATTEST:
LATONDA SIMMONS
City Clerk and Clerk of the Council
of the City of Oakland, California
Date of Attestation:

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NOTICE AND DIGEST
AN
ORDINANCE
TO
ENACT
THE
UNIFORMS
RESIDENTIAL TENANT RELOCATION ORDINANCE TO
(1) ESTABLISH AN UNIFORM SCHEDULE OF
RELOCATION
PAYMENTS;
(2)
TO
EXTEND
RELOCATION PAYMENTS TO TENANTS DISPLACED BY
OWNER MOVE-IN EVICTIONS; (3) TO EXTEND
RELOCATION PAYMENTS TO TENANTS DISPLACED BY
CONDOMINIUM CONVERSIONS; AND (4) CONFORM
EXISTING ELLIS ACT AND CODE COMPLIANCE
RELOCATION AMOUNTS TO THOSE IN THE UNIFORM
SCHEDULE
The Ordinance enacts the Uniform Residential Tenant
Relocation Ordinance to establish an uniform schedule of
relocation payments for no-fault evictions; extend relocation
payments to tenants displaced by owner or relative move-in
evictions; and extend relocation payments to tenants
displaced by condominium conversions.

Oakland City Attorney Resolution Asks Federal Government To Reclassify Medical Cannabis

Oakland City Attorney Resolution Asks Federal Government To Reclassify Medical Cannabis

On November 17th, Oakland City Attorney Barbara Parker’s staff will introduce a resolution to the Oakland City Council that, if passed, will ask the Federal Government to reclassify Medical Cannabis from its current status as a “Schedule 1 controlled substance.”

The Oakland City Attorney argues that because of this designation, “the federal government considers marijuana as dangerous a heroin with no medical use and high potency for abuse” and that threats of criminal arrest and prosecution leave those in need of the medicine unable to obtain it lawfully.

According to the Oakland City Council Agenda for November 17th, the item is called “Subject: Declaration Of Medical Cannabis Health Emergency From: Office Of The City Attorney Recommendation: Adopt A Resolution Renewing The City Council’s Declaration Of A Local Public Health Emergency With Respect To Safe, Affordable Access To Medical Cannabis In The City Of Oakland” and is Agenda File #17-0197.

The meeting starts at 5:30 PM at Oakland City Hall, 1 Frank Ogawa Plaza. via IFTTT

Will California’s New Housing Laws Really Help Oakland’s Affordablity Problem?

On September 29th, California Governor Jerry Brown put pen to the paper of what he called “15 good bills” designed to respond to the state’s affordable housing crisis. But will they really help Oakland’s affordability problem? They are as follows according to the press release from the Governor’s Office:

SB 2 (Atkins), the Building Homes and Jobs Act, establishes a permanent funding source for affordable housing through a $75 fee on real estate transaction documents. The fee is capped at $225 per transaction and exempts real estate sales. The fees would generate roughly $250 million a year, which would be split among state and local housing programs.

“We know what solves homelessness: homes,” said Senator Toni Atkins (D-San Diego). “SB 2 will provide an ongoing infusion of funding that communities all over California need to build affordable housing, so they can help bring people off the streets and into safe homes with supportive services. It will also help provide housing for seniors on low, fixed incomes and struggling families. California’s housing crisis is causing pervasive instability for individuals, families and communities. It will take continued hard work to solve the crisis, but our comprehensive, multifaceted package of housing bills is a good start toward restoring stability. I thank my colleagues who have contributed their great ideas, and I thank Governor Brown and our legislative leadership for making housing a top priority in 2017.”

SB 3 (Beall) authorizes $4 billion in general obligation bonds for affordable housing programs and a veteran’s home ownership program. SB 3 must be approved by voters next November.

“Senate Bill 3 gives California the opportunity to build $15 billion in much-needed affordable housing for working families, seniors, vets, and the homeless,” said Senator Jim Beall (D-San Jose). “Together, SB 3 and the housing bills signed today represent a historic step to expand a limited housing supply and counterbalance the skyrocketing market that threatens our future and economy. More Californians will be able to live in the community where they work and spend less time on congested roads.”

SB 35 (Wiener) streamlines the approval process for infill developments in local communities that have failed to meet their regional housing needs.

“California just took a huge step forward to address our housing crisis – a crisis that is tearing our communities apart, undermining our environment and economy, and making it harder for families to succeed,” said Senator Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco). “No one should be living on our streets, be forced into three or four hour commutes, or have to leave their community as their family grows because they just can’t afford housing. These bills to streamline housing creation and fund new affordable housing construction won’t solve California’s entire housing problem – that will take years of hard work given how deep this crisis is – but today we are establishing a strong foundation for future housing efforts.”

SB 166 (Skinner) ensures that cities maintain an ongoing supply of housing construction sites for residents of various income levels.

SB 167 (Skinner) increases the standard of proof required for a local government to justify a denial of low- and moderate-income housing development projects. (SB 167 is identical to AB 678.)

“Our housing permit process should not be a shell game,” said Senator Nancy Skinner (D-Berkeley). “My bills, SB 166 and 167, tackle the ‘Not in My Backyard’ obstacles that too often keep needed housing from being built.”

SB 540 (Roth) streamlines the environmental review process for certain local affordable housing projects.

“Access to housing is a basic human need,” said Senator Richard D. Roth (D-Riverside). “That’s why I am proud to have authored SB 540, which will incentivize and streamline housing construction to meet our state’s dire housing shortage. California is home to one of the most expensive housing markets in the nation, with many folks unable to afford to rent or own a home. SB 540 is a commonsense measure that will remove the barriers to housing construction in the areas most in need, helping ensure this crisis does not continue to grow and families do not continue to struggle”

AB 72 (Santiago/Chiu) strengthens the state’s ability to enforce laws that require local governments to achieve housing goals.

“Housing should not be for the privileged few who can afford a place to live,” said Assemblymember Miguel Santiago (D-Los Angeles). “Housing should be a right ensuring that any person who tries hard, works hard, and plays by the rules has the ability to sleep with a roof over their head. I’m thrilled that the Governor agrees with my legislative colleagues and I on this issue and I thank him for his leadership during California’s current housing emergency.”

AB 73 (Chiu) gives local governments incentives to create housing on infill sites near public transportation.

“California is a large and diverse state, but one thing we all share is that we’re living through the worst housing crisis in our state’s history,” said Assemblymember David Chiu (D-San Francisco). “With this historic package of bills, we begin to take on the affordable housing crisis that threatens our state’s economic prosperity, deepens inequality, and increases homelessness. My deep thanks goes to Speaker Anthony Rendon for making housing a top priority, and to my Assembly and Senate colleagues for their tireless partnership. I also appreciate the engaged leadership of Governor Brown and his incredible team. Our work is not done, but we’re making a down payment for our children’s future, for people struggling to pay the rent or the mortgage or even to have a roof at all, and for our teachers, firefighters and other workers who can’t afford a home in the cities they serve.”

AB 571 (E. Garcia) makes it easier to develop farmworker housing by easing qualifications for the Farmworker Housing Tax Credit.

“I truly want to commend Governor Brown, Speaker Rendon and Chairman Chiu for leading the charge to address our state’s severe housing crisis,” said Assemblymember Eduardo Garcia (D-Coachella). “I was proud to support this comprehensive package of bills, anchored around SB 2 and SB 3, which established a funding mechanism for these critical measures, and play my part advocating on behalf of rural Californian communities, like those in my district that have been historically underserved. AB 571 eases eligibility requirements for a state tax credit for developers to build migrant housing. Farmworker labor fuels our economies, yet these areas lack the necessary investments to spur growth and prosperity. These modifications to the Farmworker Housing Assistance Tax Credit Program, along with other programs established within this historic bill package, will help ensure the essential right to safe, affordable housing for more of our hard working families and veterans across California.”

AB 678 (Bocanegra) increases the standard of proof required for a local government to justify its denial of low- to moderate-income housing development projects. (AB 678 is identical to SB 167.)

“California is in the midst of an unprecedented housing crisis caused by a severe lack of inventory and new housing construction,” said Assemblymember Raul Bocanegra (D-Pacoima). “I’m proud to have worked with many of my colleagues in the Legislature as well as with Governor Brown to help create more housing and make owning or renting in California more affordable by providing greater certainty during the project approval process at the local level.”

AB 879 (Grayson) authorizes a study of local fees charged to new residential developments that will also include a proposal to substantially reduce such fees.

“This has been a long time coming, and after a decade of falling behind 100,000 housing units a year we finally exercised the fortitude to move California forward,” said Assemblymember Tim Grayson (D-Concord). “Though this package is not a fix all – it contains the first steps in the right direction. I want to thank leadership and the Governor for their work and vision on this issue.”

AB 1397 (Low) makes changes to the definition of land suitable for residential development to increase the number of sites where new multifamily housing can be built.

“No one should be denied a place to call home,” said Assemblymember Evan Low (D-Campbell). “This housing package will help make our Golden State shine bright again.”

AB 1505 (Bloom/Bradford/Chiu/Gloria) authorizes cities and counties to adopt an inclusionary ordinance for residential rental units in order to create affordable housing.

“The skyrocketing cost of housing is forcing millions of Californians to make stressful financial decisions every month just to keep the eviction notice off their front door,” said Assemblymember Richard H. Bloom (D-Santa Monica). “Our housing problem is real and devastating to families, seniors, and young adults in communities throughout this state. Today’s signing of AB 1505 ensures that real affordable housing is built so our teachers, grocery clerks, car mechanics, and retired seniors – those who we interact with every day and who make up the fabric of our communities – can also afford to live in our communities.”

“People shouldn’t have to the leave the state in order to find affordable housing or achieve the American dream of home ownership,” said Senator Steven Bradford (D-Gardena.)

“Skyrocketing housing costs have squeezed California’s working and middle class for too long,” said Assemblymember Todd Gloria (D-San Diego). “I am proud to join the Governor and my fellow legislators to pass a historic package of bills that makes specific and tangible progress to give some relief to those struggling to pay their rents and mortgages. We have more work to do on housing affordability and I look forward to building on this year’s achievements in the months ahead. Our goal must remain a roof over the head of every Californian at a price they can afford.”

AB 1515 (Daly) allows housing projects to be afforded the protections of the Housing Accountability Act if the project is consistent with local planning rules despite local opposition.

“The Housing Accountability Act fosters and respects responsible local control by providing certainty to all stakeholders in the local approval process, and preventing NIMBYism from pressuring local officials into rejecting or downsizing compliant housing projects,” said Assemblymember Tom F. Daly (D-Anaheim). “AB 1515 strengthens the provisions of the HAA and provides courts with clear standards for interpreting the HAA in favor of building housing.”

AB 1521 (Bloom/Chiu) gives experienced housing organizations a first right of refusal to purchase affordable housing developments in order to keep the units affordable.

For full text of the bills, visit: http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov.

“These new laws will help cut red tape and encourage more and affordable housing, including shelter for the growing number of homeless in California,” said Governor Brown.

No one should have to work three full-time jobs just to provide a home for their family,” said Senate President pro Tempore Kevin de Leïn. “This bipartisan package by the legislature marks an historic step towards our goal of ensuring that every Californian has a place to call home.”

But in Oakland’s case, will the bills work? Prior to 2012, Oakland benefited from the use of California Redevelopment Law, and what became a robust affordable housing funding effort that saw $111 million Oakland had for use in 2011.

But then, the same Governor Brown who now is trying to alter the climate to cause more affordable housing to be made, took away the industry’s best tool in 2011. That was the year Brown had completed a full-attack on the California Redevelopment Law System, and with the idea that doing away with the CRL would save the state $1 billion. What it did was take away a giant engine of funding for affordable housing, especially for Oakland.

Prior to Brown’s action, and the California Supreme Court’s ratification of it, CRL was such that 20 percent of redevelopment tax increment revenue was set aside for use in the development of affordable housing. By 2011, Oakland had an affordable housing fund that was at $111 million; now, the Oakland City Council has bragged about having just over $50 million for the same purposed – under half what was there, when more is needed.

The question is will this new set of laws really solve Oakland’s and California’s affordable housing problem? Stay tuned for more on this.

In 2017 Oakland Engaging In Analysis Paralysis After 2016 Ghost Ship Warehouse Fire

Oakland Warehouse Fire Photo Courtesy of CBS News

In the wake of the tragic Oakland Ghost Ship Fire that took 36 lives on December 2, 2016, The City of Oakland has still not taken any meaningful action to make sure that such an event does not occur again, save for one policy change: allowing Oakland Police Officers to tell the City about unpermitted events.

This effort is also part of a survey that’s under way and established by an inner-City-of-Oakland group called the Special Event Permit Redesign Task Force. Don’t worry if you’ve not been informed about it as an Oakland resident; only City of Oakland staffers sit on it, and that’s a bad idea.

The Special Event Permit Redesign Task Force includes “Greg Minor and Nancy Marcus in the City’s Administrator’s Office, Kelley Kahn in the Mayor’s Office, Jim MacIlvaine in the Cultural Affairs Office, Sgt. Andy McNeil in the Oakland Police Department, Assistant Fire Marshall Cesar Avila in the Oakland Fire Department, Tim Low in Building Services and Aubrey Rose in the Planning Department, (and) has identified several barriers that discourage compliance, as well as strategies to combat these obstacles.”

But on the survey page the task force does not explain what those “several barriers that discourage compliance, as well as strategies to combat these obstacles” are.

The problem is what we in planning used to call “Analysis Paralysis” – or “the state of over-analyzing (or over-thinking) a situation so that a decision or action is never taken, in effect paralyzing the outcome.”

For example, the survey has been in existence for several months now, and no release of information from it has happened. Moreover, the survey itself lacks a way to determine the location of any venue that may be the focus of the response. There’s a reason for this, if wrongheaded.

Greg Minor, in The City’s Administrator’s Office, said in an email to me that..

“The special event permit redesign survey did not include a question regarding the specific venue(s) associated with the survey respondents in order to protect the anonymity of the survey respondents, many of whom have expressed concern about either being displaced from their place of residence/assembly or having the venue shut down. In turn, this anonymity should maximize the amount of information the City receives from those currently holding unpermitted events.

In terms of the task force composition, it only includes staff members but has and will benefit from the expertise of those involved in the entertainment community. For example, the task force conducted a listening session with a focus group of event holders earlier this year, met with the sf entertainment commission director, is currently reaching out to the public via the survey, and will circle back with the entertainment community as it moves forward with implementing the suggestions put forth by the public.”

Given that today is now September 23rd, 2017, and that email was just sent to me on September 14th, and the Warehouse Fire happened on December 2nd, there has been plenty of time to do that, and to take more meaningful action.

Like what?

If I were to put on my economic development hat, I would call a real estate broker who specializes in warehouse development and go around the City with that person, making an inventory of warehouses – used and not used. I got this idea from a project I worked on as an intern in the Oakland Office of Economic Development.

In 1987, it was my job to find a way to relocate pipes owned by East Bay Municipal Utilities District (EBMUD). My boss, Oakland Assistant City Manager Ezra Rapport, did not give me a road-map to use – he expected me, the Berkeley City Planning grad, to come up with the method myself. So I did.

I found a site, and went about the task of relocating the pipes, stopped only by EBMUB, who’s property manager had no idea Ezra put me up to the task.

But if I can do that, then, 30 years later, what the hell is going on with the City of Oakland that it does not have staff members who take effective action?

Rather than just posting a survey online, the task force should be expanded to include Oakland event producers like my friend Lionel Bea, and actually make a list of places that events have been held or could be held, and determine what’s right and wrong with them via a combination of site visits, phone calls, emails, and information provided by organizations that have held (for example) art gallery tours.

Then, when problems are found, create solutions, and where that has to be done, draft a resolution for the Oakland City Council, and then get to work selling the plan to the City Council – then once all of the kinks in the plan are worked out (and limit that work to a month’s time), put it up for vote.

That could have been done by now. It can be done by now. It should be done by now.

Oakland has policy wonked itself to a point of inaction. The Special Event Permit Redesign Task Force has to stop wasting taxpayer dollars and get to work.

Stay tuned.

Rebecca Kaplan

Rebecca Kaplan Hosts Oakland Public Banking Forum; City Council Votes to Fund Study

Oakland Councilmember Rebecca Kaplan
Oakland Councilmember Rebecca Kaplan

OAKLAND, CA (Press release) – On Monday, September 25th, Oakland Councilmembers Rebecca Kaplan (At-Large) and Dan Kalb (District One) will host a community forum on public banking and renewable energy, at Oakland City Hall, 3rd Floor, from 7-9pm. The forum, co-sponsored by Friends of the Public Bank of Oakland and Local Clean Energy Alliance, will discuss how a public bank in Oakland could help fund local renewable energy resources for our new Community Choice program, and bring jobs and economic benefits to communities throughout Alameda County.

This forum follows tonight’s public banking victory, where Oakland City Council passed Councilmember Kaplan’s Resolution authorizing a public bank feasibility study. The Resolution, co-sponsored by Councilmembers Kaplan, Kalb, and Guillen, authorized a feasibility study of a regional public bank with the ability to provide community benefit lending and handle cannabis business deposits. The study was funded by Oakland City Council at $75,000, the City of Berkeley at $25,000, and private donors, many from the cannabis industry. Councilmember Kaplan offers special thanks to these donors, especially Berkeley Mayor Arreguín and Berkeley Councilmember Worthington, for contributing to the study, and making it a collaborative, regional effort.

Councilmember Kaplan says: “Passing this Resolution marks an important step in the process of investigating public banking for the City of Oakland and larger region. By creating a bank that is accountable to the community, we can fund needed projects, offer low interest loans to underserved populations, and invest in accordance with our values. We can protect our cannabis community by taking them out of the cash economy, and, like our recent successful efforts to create Community Choice Energy, we can harness local community support to take action that improves the environment, public health, and the local economy. As distrust in big corporate banks and lack of oversight at the Federal level are growing problems — this is how we can be part of the solution.”

Libby Schaaf Runs For Re-Election As Mayor Of Oakland, Raises $161K So Far

Libby Schaaf is officially running for re-election as Mayor of Oakland – not new news at all. Let’s take a look at where the 50th Mayor of Oakland, and first white woman to run the City of Oakland, stands in her quest to retain her seat as of this moment in time. Preliminarily, one has to say she looks pretty good, particularly from a fund-raising and competitors standpoint.

In 2014, Schaaf raised $341.503.55, and even though challenger Bryan Parker raised more than she did by just over $11,000, he failed to make that money become votes: Schaaf gained 20,094 votes (when rank-choice voting second and third selections are combined with first picks), versus just 5,546 votes for Parker. (Who has said he has no plans to run again, but people do change their minds.) This year, Schaaf’s on a good pace with respect to that.

Right now, according to City of Oakland campaign files, Schaaf has already raised just over 47 percent of her 2014 campaign total, or $161,557.66 as of July 30th 2017.

That $161,557.66 came from some of the usual suspects: local Oakland entrepreneur John Bliss and his wife Kim Thompson, who’s an Oakland lawyer, Oakland Lawyers Joan Story and Bob Stumpf, long-time friend and legal talent recruiter Becky Taylor, San Francisco-based Political Consultant John Whitehurst, Oakland-based Political Consultant Jason Overman, Yui Hay Lee’s architecture firm, William Rosseti of Oakland apartment owner J and R Associates, and SCN Strategies of San Francisco.

The list was also notable for who didn’t put money into it: one name that sticks out among them is long time Oakland lawyer Zachary Wasserman of Wendel Rosen Black & Dean LLP (a firm Mayor Schaaf once worked for). Another is Amy Baker, who seems to have timed out from supporting the Mayor this time around.

I know these two were supporters before, because they were at the same initial fund-raiser i attended in 2014, and assembled by Oakland developer John Protopappas – who’s name was not on the City of Oakland record this time around, either.

And missing were the folks in this video from the press conference on the minimum wage law:

That would seem to imply Mayor Schaaf has a problem drawing back the people who initially helped her. Considering it’s still early in the political ball game this time out, that could change.

Still, Mayor Schaaf has crafted for herself an uphill battle – and the hill is formed by two simple facts: she forgot to bring along her real friends, and Libby micro-managed in matters she was better off letting more experienced players work for her.

The friends matter reared its head, first, in 2014, when a mutual friend of ours complained that she wanted to work for Libby (and needed work) but could not get a call back from her. I did reach out to Libby on her behalf, but the then-new Mayor was supposedly too swamped to get back to our friend.

That’s the lesson in politics: friendship is a two-way street: you can’t ask for people to help you, if you’re not willing to help them when you reach the prize. For all of his errors, that’s the one rule Donald Trump did not forget when he became POTUS: keep your friends close – period. Money is the oil that helps friendships run smoothly – the other factor is communication. Libby didn’t get the memo in both cases.

(Mainstream media types might complain about friends and cronies in politics, but then they turn around and act the same way in newsrooms. Go figure.)

The other lesson is to let more experienced people help you and then you sit back and take the credit. Scott McKibben, the current head-boss over at the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Joint Powers Authority (JPA) was completely unappreciated by Mayor Schaaf, and her bad treatment of him is one reason he’s all-but out of the door and headed to run Levi Stadium. If McKibben had been the head of a task force to retain the Raiders (and one ran by the JPA), the Oakland Raiders arguably would not be wasting bucks in Las Vegas as I write this.

But I digress.

So with that, and more from the usual suspects of errors in judgement you and I both know about (like the Police Sex Scandal, the Ghost Ship Fire, and the apparent loss of the Raiders), it would seem Libby has a set of problems that could hamper her quest for the brass ring, once again. But there’s one fact: as of this writing, she’s running for Mayor of Oakland unopposed.

Sure, there are many rumors that this person, or that person, or me, will go against Libby, but none of them has materialized for now. Heck, I was just told there’s a rumor that a former African American female employee of Libby’s thinking of running for Mayor.

Considering there are two who fit that “former” tag, and one of them is Director of Communications for Mozilla, that could only mean Peggy Moore. Yep: the same Peggy Moore who ran for the Oakland City Council At-Large Seat and lost to the incumbent Rebecca Kaplan. The same Peggy Moore who was one of Libby’s major behind-the-scenes campaign workers the first time out.

Yes… THAT Peggy Moore…

Keep your friends close, right?

Stay tuned.

Libby Schaaf For Mayor Of Oakland 2018 Campaign Statement And Monetary Contributions To Date by Zennie Abraham on Scribd

Buffy Wicks, Former Obama Aide, Running For California State Assembly District 15 2018

Buffy Wicks is someone I’ve known since 2007, and because of her job as field organizer with the Obama For America campaign. After the successful 2008 Presidential Election, Buffy landed a position in the White House working for President Obama.

I interviewed Buffy at the 2012 Democratic National Convention:

After the unsuccessful 2016 Presidential Race ran by Hillary Clinton, for which Buffy was, again, a field organizer, she took time off with her family in Oakland, then issued this letter moments ago, today, announcing her run for the California State Assembly District 15 Seat currently held by Eric Swalwell:

Advocate and Activist Buffy Wicks Launches Campaign For State Assembly

OAKLAND — Today, in an email and video message to supporters, advocate for kids and families and longtime grassroots activist Buffy Wicks officially announced her candidacy to be the next Assemblywoman from California’s 15th District.

“We live in scary times, but here’s the thing: we don’t have to let what’s happening in Washington define us,” Buffy said. “California has the unique opportunity to achieve bold, progressive goals that reflect our shared values and actually help people: economic security for all women and families, equity for all people, and clean air and water for all our kids. The next Assemblywoman from our district should be leading this fight, and that’s exactly what I’m going to do.”

Buffy is a community organizer, an advocate, and a grassroots leader with experience at the local, state and federal level. A California native, she got her start in community organizing when she moved to the Bay Area to organize against the Iraq War. She’s been an organizer ever since.

Buffy became a grassroots organizer for Howard Dean’s presidential campaign, then joined the United Food and Commercial Workers and led the campaign to fight Wal-Mart for better wages and health care for its employees. In 2007, she was one of the first hires on then Senator Obama’s campaign for President, innovating the campaign’s national grassroots organizing model and serving as one of the senior staff for the California primary. Following the President’s election, she was asked to serve in the Obama White House organizing support for the eventual passage of the Affordable Care Act that has provided more than 20 million Americans with health care, including 5 million here in California.

Buffy’s passion is fighting for equity, equal opportunity, and economic security – with a particular focus on policies affecting women and children. She served at the Center for American Progress as a Senior Fellow, where she launched a national policy initiative, with Planned Parenthood and SEIU, fighting for economic security for women and families. Currently, Buffy is leading a statewide campaign to empower parents to advocate for better opportunities for their kids. Buffy hopes to continue advocating for California’s parents and kids as an Assemblywoman in Sacramento, where only 22% of our state legislators are women and just a handful are mothers to young children.

Buffy lives in Oakland with her husband Peter and her 6-month old daughter, Josephine.

Alameda County DA Files Charges Against 7 Oakland Police Officers In Celeste Guap Sex Scandal

Nancy O’Malley, the Alameda County District Attorney, has filed charges against seven Oakland Police Officers that were responsible for the sexual violation of Jasmine Celese Abuslin, who’s commonly known as Celeste Guap. You can read more about the charges filed here, but the DA did not release the names of the officers.

You can learn about Ms. Guap herself, via this interview conducted by Zennie Abraham:

Rebecca Kaplan First Oakland Councilmember On BAAQMD Since 1992 #OakMtg

rebecca-kaplan-oakland-councilme1
Councilmember Rebecca Kaplan

OAKLAND, CA (Press Release) – After over two decades of Oakland going unrepresented on the Board of the powerful Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD), Oakland Councilmember At-Large Rebecca Kaplan won a seat on the Board of Directors, representing all of the Cities of Alameda County.

Link for BAAQMD Board: http://www.baaqmd.gov/about-the-air-district/board-of-directors

Councilmember Kaplan is the first Oakland representative to hold a seat on BAAQMD’s Board of Directors since the late Oakland Councilmember Frank Ogawa left the Board in 1992. Kaplan obtained the seat, which is appointed by the Alameda County Conference of Mayors, by applying and obtaining the votes of Mayors of cities from throughout Alameda County, upon the departure of prior member, Margaret Fujioka of Piedmont.

In her short time thus far on the BAAQMD Board, Kaplan has successfully advanced limits on refinery pollution, new funding for the Broadway Shuttle connecting BART, ferries, Amtrak and more through downtown Oakland, and is launching new initiatives to clean up air pollution from trucks.

Kaplan said: “Parts of Oakland have had some of the highest asthma rates in the nation, and it is vital that programs and laws to improve air quality for our region protect some of our hardest hit and most vulnerable communities.”

Councilmember Kaplan plans to work with BAAQMD to achieve high quality air standards and reduce the health problems caused by air pollution. Councilmember Kaplan has already urged the Board of Directors to adopt stricter emission limits for the Bay Area oil refineries in order to protect community and refinery worker health and safety. “Bay Area residents already suffer disproportionally from emissions related diseases,” Kaplan said. “This is unacceptable, which is why we must prohibit any further increase of emissions from the five Bay Area oil refineries.”

Oakland receives a disproportionate share of some of the negative impacts, from truck congestion and pollution from ships and other projects that benefit the economy of the region. Solving the region’s traffic congestion and air quality problems can be achieved more effectively if the city in the heart of the region, which carries a majority of freight traffic and other impacts, is at the table and part of the solution.

Bringing creative programs, whether connecting transit systems, increasing use of zero-emission vehicles, or improving truck systems to protect communities, can improve air quality and human health for Oakland and the entire Bay Area.

To learn more about BAAQMD, please click here.

In Oakland, Councilmember Kaplan fought for and succeeded in keeping the Free Broadway Shuttle running. This fast and free shuttle connects riders to Oakland offices, restaurants, local shops, and social services 7 days a week. “Before the Broadway Shuttle, Oakland had a hole in the transit system,” Kaplan said. “The Broadway Shuttle helps weave that together, which is why I am so happy to have succeeded in maintaining this service.”

To learn more about the Broadway Free Shuttle, please click here.

Tony Thurmond, Rob Bonta, And The Metropolitan Transportation Commission

Tony Thurmond, Rob Bonta, And The Metropolitan Transportation Commission

Looks like it’s up to California Assemblypersons Tony Thurmond (D 15th District) and Rob Bonta (D 18th District) to make sure that MTC won’t become its own, self-serving mini-empire once the “merger” with ABAG goes through and all the planners in that formerly once-respected agency are let out to pasture – or, more likely, onto the street.

The promise of more efficient and fairer Bay Area-wide governance depends on what kinds of checks and balances the Thurmond-chaired Assembly Select Committee on Regional Planning manages to put into place, otherwise the already-painful elitism of a superagency like MTC will continue on its psycho path of funding special interests while throwing mere crumbs into public transit and other needed infrastructural improvements.

Think not? How bizarre that so much public money ($250M+ and already $90M over budget!) should into the purchase and remodel of the new, not-at-all necessary MTC HQ in SF, an exercise in power that some malcontents have already tagged the Taj Mahemminger. Well, it is a more worthy address than crudball Oakland, no? Plus it just happens to be farther from BART (so the hoi polloi will have an increasingly difficult time accessing the new building and actually coming into contact with MTC personnel?).

Plus, we get a new Emperor out of all this! There’s suddenly just one supreme head of post-merger MTC to direct staff when it comes to the usual monthly buffalo session for Commissioners, where staff-prepared reports that are too big for even Paul Bunyon to digest in a single sitting are piled high like pancakes, topped with the syrup of public money, and a yea vote expected.

Our recent Bay Bridge Bolts Boondoggle could soon be seen as this decade’s construction highlight if Rob and Tony don’t ride to the rescue here and allow for the healthiest possible oversight process to be in place when the next round of abuses hits the headlines. This is, after all, the ultimate regional government we’ll all be left with when our Bay Area-wide megalopolis finally coalesces into a single entity to manage one of the strongest economies in the US, if not the entire world.