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Council To Vote On Rent Control Program Annual Fee

Next week, Alameda city council is expected to approve an annual rental program fee of $131 per unit. (File photo)

Next week, Alameda city council is expected to approve an annual rental program fee of $131 per unit. (File photo)

On Tuesday, Alameda city council will consider a staff recommendation to charge an annual rental program fee of $131 per unit to support a rent control ordinance enacted in March.

The City of Alameda contracted with SCI Consulting Group to conduct a study of county assessor data. SCI found that some 14,889 rental units may be subject to an annual program fee.

Direct and indirect labor costs, services, and supplies costs to run the program are estimated to be $1.95 million per year.

Dividing the cost by the number of units produces an annual fee of $131.

City staff are also recommending that property owners be permitted to pass 50 percent of the program fee on to tenants in equal installments over the course of twelve months. The program fee would not be included as rent when owners calculate a percentage increase.

Under the March ordinance, landlords or tenants can appeal a Rent Review Advisory Committee decision regarding increases above the five percent threshold.

SCI determined the cost of the appeals process to be $4,705, when factoring in a contracted hearing officer.

To discourage frivolous appeals, city staff is recommending that landlords be charged 10 percent of that cost ($471) to start an appeal, and tenants be charged five percent ($235).

The balance would be, in the words of the staff report, “apportioned to all the owners of the non-exempt rental units the following fiscal year when the actual costs of this part of the program are better known and the program fee is recalculated.”

City staffers recommend reviewing the fee after the first year of operation, and possibly adjusting the fee in accordance with the Consumer Price Index annually.

Assuming council approves the plan next week, the fee would become operative July 1, 2016.

1 comment to Council To Vote On Rent Control Program Annual Fee

  • Paul

    Lets see in April the first month of rent control in Alameda the RRAC had eleven cases presented according to the report in the City’s Website for rent control.
    (See http://www.alamedarentprogram.org/reports/ ) I think this might be on the high side as I’ve seen reports in the papers over the last several years that no cases were brought forward so not even a meeting for the RRAC sometimes several months in a row if memory serves me correctly. If we take the Approx. 2 million required by the City to run the new city ordinance by an average 11 cases per month x 12 months for 132 cases per year handled by the RRAC gives me $2,000,000.00/132=$15,151.52 per case. Just doesn’t make any sense to me why the Landlord should pay for any of this when all protections are in favor of the tenant and the owners property rights have been taken away. I think if we are to have such an ordinance that the only benefactor is the tenant so the tenant should pay the cost of the benefits.

    http://static1.squarespace.com/static/56df370d22482e5c7f09022f/t/57559c1907eaa0a99ef4005a/1465228316866/Rent+Program+Monthly+Report+-+April+2016.pdf

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