Enacting COVID-19 eviction protections – our work is not done

I want to thank so many of you who raised your voice in support of AB 1436.  Our bill sought to protect millions of tenants who haven’t been able to pay rent due to COVID-19 economic hardships and were facing immediate evictions this week, when the judiciary branch ended its temporary eviction moratorium.  Hundreds of tenant, labor and progressive organizations fought alongside us to keep California’s 17 million tenants housed.
Our coalition and I fought tooth and nail to pass AB 1436 against very significant opposition. In the end, a compromise measure was agreed upon, and AB 3088 — the Tenant, Homeowner, and Small Landlord Relief and Stabilization Act of 2020 — was passed late Monday night, right before courts lifted the moratorium.  I’m happy to say the spirit of AB 1436 is very much in this new bill, albeit scaled back.

I wanted to make sure you understand what happened, and what AB 3088 does.  Please read this San Francisco Chronicle article on the bill by clicking here — and share it with your friends and family.

Here are some highlights from AB 3088:It will ensure that any tenant who missed a rent payment between March and August 2020 because of financial hardship due to COVID-19 will be protected from eviction.It also ensures that anyone who faces COVID-19 financial hardship between September 2020 and January 2021 will only owe a portion of their rent — and the rent payments they miss cannot be used as justification for a future eviction.Small landlords will also be provided foreclosure protections from the Homeowner Bill of Rights, as well as new accountability and transparency during the forbearance process. Please visit HousingIsKey.com for more information about the new rules. 

It pains me that this bill will not stop every eviction.  There was much more I wanted to see in the bill, much more we fought to truly protect renters.  But it became clear during the negotiations that the choice was not between this bill and a stronger one – it was between this bill and nothing at all.  The consequences of doing nothing were too dire to comprehend.
Because you raised your voice for these critical protections, we were able to get this far — and many, many Californians will be protected from evictions. I can’t thank you enough for standing with us.
Please read this article about the bill and the difficult negotiations — and share it with your friends and family today. This issue impacts millions of Californians, and everyone should know if these protections affect them.
The tenant protections in AB 3088 will expire on January 31, 2020.  During the coming months, we will monitor the impact of the pandemic and recession on tenants, as well as know whether there will be a new federal administration ready to engage with California to provide economic relief for struggling tenants and landlords.  
When the next legislative session resumes full time in Sacramento in January — before these protections run out — I plan to hit the ground running to resume this critical conversation.  I look forward to continuing the fight with you on behalf of millions of renters who deserve to have a roof over their head, particularly during this pandemic.  
Our work is not done.  We will be back.