Tenants Fight Back

In a recent Register-Guard article headlined “State Rent Control Advances,” the Emerald properties issue is treated as an isolated incident. Actually, this reaction is widespread. That is why Richmond, California, in its wisdom, included a retroactivity clause in their rent control measure.

Oregon did declare an emergency, but it was insufficient to counteract the obvious knee-jerk reaction of “last chance” massive increases. California is not restricted in any way in their rent control movement, but we are!

Tenants have had enough and are fighting back. Measure SB 608 really only advances two things: a limit on “catastrophic” rent increases and the elimination of no-cause evictions.

The limit is 7 percent “plus” the CPI, which Tina Kotek calculated at 10.3 percent for this year. Is this not catastrophic enough for you? I know of no wage increases that could cover this.

Landlords must do their raises regularly now, for if not, they lose it. Which means rents will go up even more from this day forward. Such incentives will drive up evictions.

The hope attached to this measure will dissipate by example. Renters will know their situation is a slow death. The pain will continue under the passage of SB 608, only now it will affect a much broader range of renters beyond the wide spread “last chance” increases that have already taken place.

Cliff Gray


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