Prepare for a Bait and Switch on Registration Fees

March 21 2022

Dear Editor,

The rent board wants to register the rents of all units in the city, including non rent-control rentals ("Proposed Charter Amendment Requires All Units to Register with Rent Board," March 16, 2022).

If am a rent control tenant who rents out a room, will I need to register my roommates and their amenities and pay registration fees each time?

The rent board might say it won’t apply to rent control tenants who have roommates. . . but then this will generate fees for rent board employees -- which is a powerful motivator in its favor. Prepare for a bait and switch on this issue.

Indeed, why should rent control tenants be exempt from registering roommates, as they themselves already benefit from registered rents?

Suppose all rent control tenants stop renting to roommates because of the hassle and lawsuits? It may create 1,000 empty bedrooms in the city.

Will we have to build 1,000 more apartments to make up for it?

This law is solely to give the rent board employees pay raises, at the cost of less and less housing. There are plenty of laws that cover this area already. . . this is simply a pay-raise-grab that hurts tenants rather than helps them.

The rent board should be allowed to transfer employees to other departments in the City to reduce expenses in line with the fees and workload, rather than adding a punitive tax on tenants in Santa Monica.

Peter Borresen
Santa Monica

Back to Lookout News Santa Monica Lookout is owned by Copyright 1999-2022 . All Rights Reserved. EMAIL Disclosures