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Eviction moratorium proposed for City of San Diego

linda vista complex.jpg
Posted at 5:07 PM, Mar 24, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-24 20:13:29-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — San Diego renters could soon be protected from being evicted at no fault of their own.

On April 4, the City Council will consider an ordinance to drastically limit when a landlord can evict a tenant. The moratorium would be in effect for 60 days after the COVID state of emergency is declared over.

Oneyda Maldonado is hoping the city takes the action. She recently got an eviction notice giving her 60 days to get out of her Linda Vista apartment because the landlord wants pull the units off the market and sell the building.

But if the city passes the no-fault eviction moratorium, landlords wouldn't be able to force tenants out so they can do a substantial remodel and rent the unit for more money, or decide they want to move back in, or simply pull it off the market.

The ordinance is similar to the county's eviction moratorium, which expired last August and had not been replaced.

"Although the pandemic feels like it's coming to a close, we're not really completely out of the woods and so there is the concern still that we're displacing tenants and potentially creating a health hazard," said Gilberto Vera, senior attorney at the Legal Aid Society of San Diego.

From July to January, Vera's organization received more than 300 requests for help with no-fault evictions.

But the Southern California Rental Housing Association says that's a small fraction of San Diegans, and that the moratorium would hurt landlords who have legitimate reasons to take back their properties.

"I feel as if we've been a little bit blindsided," said organization president Lucinda Lilley. "The Southern California Rental Housing Association has spent the better part of the last two years, and before, making very serious outreach for collaborative efforts to solve the housing crisis."

Regardless of what the council votes, San Diegans cannot be evicted for non-payment of rent associated with a COVID-related hardship. Evictions for illegal uses and nuisances would still be allowed under the moratorium, as would eviction for non-payment of rent not-related to COVID.

Council President Sean Elo-Rivera, who is proposing the moratorium, was out of town and not available for an interview Thursday.