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    Renter Protection on November Ballot

    rebeccaOakland has risen to become the fourth most expensive rental market in the nation. This affordable housing crisis is an affront to Oakland’s talent and diversity, which is why I authored the Renter Protection Act of 2016. I am very pleased to have had the opportunity to work with a broad coalition of community members to take this important step forward to help protect the Oakland community. Our hard work paid off—the Oakland City Council unanimously voted to place the measure on the November 2016 ballot.

    The vote occurred in the early hours of July 20, after hundreds of speakers addressed the Council about the housing crisis in our city. Speakers from all walks of life shed light on the problems associated with our rental market, including homelessness and displacement of long-time Oakland residents. Policy leaders spoke to the importance of this measure, which gives Oakland residents the opportunity to vote in favor of lasting tenant protections and housing affordability.

    Our city of Oakland has previously passed laws to protect tenants from excessive rent increases, but these laws did not go far enough. Among other improvements, the Act will require landlords to petition the Rent Adjustment Board for any annual rent increases above the Consumer Price Index, expand the Just Cause eviction ordinance to homes built before 1995 (the current law applies only to homes built before 1981), and require city staff to send out annual notices stating allowable rent increases and related laws. By passing the Renter Protection Act in November, we will help protect our vibrant community and encourage residents to continue to call Oakland home.

    The measure will require a majority vote from Oakland voters in November to become law.

    Oakland City Councilmember At-Large Rebecca Kaplan was elected in 2008 and was re-elected in 2012. She is working for safe neighborhoods, for local jobs and for a fresh start for Oakland. Councilmember Kaplan graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, obtained a master’s degree from Tufts University and a Juris Doctor from Stanford Law School.