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No rent control

From: domainremoved <Joanne>
Date: Mon, 11 Feb 2019 21:30:32 -0800

Dear Mayor Mueller and Members of the City Council,

I do not support the Housing Commissionıs Tenant Relocation Ordinance and
urge you to find equitable, community-based alternatives that arenıt
punitive or burdensome on city resources.

As a housing provider who offers quality, safe housing to my tenants and
recognizes our regionıs housing challenges, I have significant concerns with
this approach:

1. Doesn't address the real housing problem. Even if all these conditions
are approved and a displaced tenant receives relocation payments, this does
not create a single additional unit, and in fact incentives the reduction of
rental units in Menlo Park. This ultimately makes housing more expensive!

2. This is going to make the affordability problem worse. If housing
providers are required to pay a relocation penalty after every termination
of tenancy or any time a tenant moves out after getting a rent increase,
then housing providers will set rents higher to cover their costs. My rents
are currently below market but this veiled form of rent control will force
me to consider bringing them to market rate and keeping it at that rate.

3. This ordinance penalizes mom and pop property owners who rely on rental
income for retirement as some do not have a large pension or IRA.

4. Mom and pop owners rely on rental income, part of it saved over the
years, in order to make significant repairs, maintain the premise, and pay
for ever increasing expenses. Most of us do not have a large cash fund to
pay for these capital expenses like a new roof and must be able to set aside
a little revenue each month, anticipating these expensive repairs. Instead,
with this ordinance I will be saving funds to pay a penalty to support my
tenants. Some mom and pop owners donıt even make the maximum income
threshhold for those who will qualify for this relocation fee.

This is rent control in disguise. Itıs a form of rent control and just cause
eviction disguised as relocation ordinance. Menlo Park voters joined San
Mateo County and the State in rejecting Prop 10. The city should consider
that Menlo Park voters did not support policies like rent control.

If the intent is to help vulnerable members of the community who are facing
housing emergencies, then a better approach is to explore emergency housing
assistance programs that is funded by the community-at large vs a specific
class of small business owners.

Thank you for your consideration.


Joanne Wong-Lam
Received on Mon Feb 11 2019 - 21:26:50 PST

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