California: “Court upholds mobile home rent controls,” by Carol J. Williams, Los Angeles Times, December 23, 2010
The U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals rejected the argument of Daniel and Susan Guggenheim of Goleta, Calif., that the city was engaged in an unconstitutional “taking” of their property by limiting how much space rentals can grow.
The Guggenheims bought the land in 1997, five years before Goleta was incorporated as a city but well after Santa Barbara County adopted the original rent-control measure in 1979. The couple had no “investment-backed expectations” taken away from them, the appeals court said, because rent control already was the law when they bought Rancho Mobile Home Estates.
San Francisco: “Weighing a landlord’s promise,” by Rebecca Bowe, San Francisco Bay Guardian, December 22, 2010
Tenant rights activist Calvin Welch, who had not yet seen the latest draft of the development agreement when the Guardian caught up with him, said “we’re agnostic” on the rent-control provision until having had a chance to carefully vet the final agreement. Yet he said the tenants were “absolutely right to be concerned,” given the recent legal precedent.
Sup. Sean Elsbernd, whose District 7 includes Parkmerced, said he tuned into the hearings though he did not attend. Elsbernd said he would feel comfortable moving forward with the plan as long as he had assurance from the City Attorney’s Office that the agreement was enforceable. “I don’t want to see that project go forward without certainty,” he said.
Elmira, NY: “Where Are The Landlords?” by Kimberly Davidow, WETM-TV, December 20. 2010
On Monday, December 20th, The City of Elmira approved an ordinance that unregistered landlords cannot charge their tenants rent. About a year ago, the city passed a law requiring Elmira landlords to register their property.
As of November, only one-hundred and sixty out of about three-thousand rental properties in the city had not followed through. City officials stated to WETM 18 News that the process to shut down these properties takes time. However, this new ordinance helps put unregistered landlords out of business faster; like these apartments at 221 Franklin Street. Tenants here were shocked to learn their landlord now could not collect rent from them.
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