Right now, our city’s housing development practices are displacing residents who’ve lived in Los Angeles for decades. Why?
The City Council has been approving housing developments that demolish affordable apartments and hurt local residents. We must stop this harmful practice by implementing a right of return policy. Developers who redevelop sites where residents are already living should be required, once the project is done, to re-integrate the residents at existing rents to reduce further burdening them and the housing stock.
Sylvie will protect renters from predatory development practices. Renters will no longer fear evictions or being priced out of their neighborhoods, and small business owners will be protected from unreasonable rent increases.
Global capital markets are targeting Los Angeles, making our city an epicenter for the speculative development of luxury high-rises. Most of these luxury buildings benefit from zoning exceptions that significantly increase their value for developers and investors while not providing any benefits for our community. While our city council member should have negotiated for these benefits, he has failed to do so. Even worse, these luxury projects have significantly higher vacancy rates than their rent-stabilized counterparts because their monthly rental rates are so much higher--usually between $1,000-$2,000 higher. Right now, luxury units are empty throughout our city while our homeless population is increasing 10% a year.
To solve this problem, I will move to implement a vacancy tax on speculative real estate. This tax will require developers with empty units to pay into a fund set aside for the construction and preservation of our limited affordable housing stock.
There are around 620,000 rent-stabilized housing units in the city of LA, many of which are rented out at rents below market rate. This represents the majority of our affordable housing stock. As money continues to flow into our city, the incentive for developers to harass and evict long-time renters who pay under market prices is significant. For those who don’t know their rights, who are elderly, or who are disadvantaged by a language barrier, the threat is especially severe. An anti-harassment ordinance would create an enforceable legal framework to protect the most vulnerable members of our communities and curb the loss of affordable units.