California Rent Control Initiative 2020 Info and Links

Links to debate, news stories, and the text of the rent control initiative. The proposition, if it makes the ballot, would allow voters to decide to amend the current rent laws to allow more properties to be covered under city rent control laws. Landlords with 2 properties would be exempt. A rent cap of 15% over three years (meaning an average of 5% a year) would be established.

Status of the Initiative

The initiative is being circulated for petition signatures. If enough signatures are collected, it will become a proposition on the November 2020 ballot.

If you wish to submit a signature in support, you need to find a petition circulator. I don’t have a printable, mailable form at this time. They can be found at community college campuses, stores, and bus stops during the day. (Text me at 626-710-8365 to find out my schedule. – john)

Research Resources

Text of the Initiative (PDF).

Ballotpedia “both sides” overview.

Some history at Curbed LA: California Voters Could Decide to Expand Rent Control in 2020.

Proposed initiative enters circulation.

Examples of Effects

Today, the Costa Hawkins Act prohibits cities from applying new rent control regulations to properties built after 1995, and in cities that have rent control, it prevents expansion of rent control past their date limits.

If this initiative makes the ballot, and then passes, the date is moved up to 2005, or later if the property was put into the rental market after 2005.

Landlords are given 15 years to make back money on their property, before it’s put under rent control, and has rent increases limited by a local law, if any.

Rent control laws usually include a “right to stay”, so they can’t evict you just to raise the rent. They need a good excuse to evict, like you are damaging the apartment.

Example 1: City Has No Rent Control at Present

For tenants to attain rent control, a city must pass a rent control ordinance. This initiative affects the viability of such a law by bringing the benefits of rent control to more local residents.

For example, if a city has 10,000 voters, and 4,000 live in rentals built before 1995, then 40% of voters benefit from a new rent control law. This is the current situation.

If the same city, with 10,000 voters, has 6,000 voters living in rentals built before 2005, then 60% of voters benefit from a new rent control law. This happens if the initiative passes.

This initiative, if passed, puts increased political pressure on local city councils to pass laws to protect tenants from excessive rent increases.

Example 2: City of Los Angeles, which has Rent Control

The City has rent control on anything larger than a duplex, built before 1979. This initiative, if passed, would allows the city to pass a law to bring into the existing rent control, the properties that have been occupied as a rental longer than 15 years.

Example 3: Mom and Pop Landord Rents Out a Back House/Casita

This type of property is exempt under the proposed law, if this is their only rental.

Example 4: Mom and Pop Landlord Rents Out a House

This type of property is exempt under the proposed law, if this is their only rental.

Example 5: An Apartment in Unincorporated LA County

Right now, there’s a temporary rent control law in unincorporated areas of LA County. The law mainly affects East Los Angeles, which is mostly older apartments, and the vast majority of residents are renters. The current rent cap is based on the inflation rate, and it was 3%.

This proposed law would not change the rent cap, because it’s lower.

More apartments would be brought under rent control, because it would change the date range from 1995 up to 2005.

Current Rent Control

Most cities in California do not have rent control.

The cities in the LA area with rent control are: the City of Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, Inglewood, and West Hollywood.

The unincorporated areas, like East LA, now have temporary rent control. This is not all of LA County, just the parts that aren’t within a city government.

See the LA County Department of Consumer and Business Affairs Rent Control page for more info.

Green Party

California Green Party supported the similar Proposition 10 in 2016.

Los Angeles County Green Party members circulated the petition to put Prop 10 on the ballot.

Eastside Greens are involved with the LA Tenants Union, which is a tenants organization fighting against excessive rent increases.

LA’s Totally Awsome Glue-Away and Goo Gone Reviewed and Compared

How does this new product compare to Goo Gone, the standard adhesive remover and cleaner that people use to remove stickers from products before they gift them, or, in my case, resell them online.

About Goo Gone

Goo Gone is considered the go-to cleaner if you want to remove a sticker form a product or tape from an object. While many products can take care of this issue, Goo Gone has the following qualities that make it stand out:

  • It softens sticker glue so you can peel off the label.
  • It evaporates, slowly, so the cleaner goes away without effort.
  • It doesn’t melt plastic… sort of. It seems to contain a plasticizer that makes plastic shrink wrap stretch, and sometimes leaks behind the plastic.

Competitor Goof Off is in the same product space, but their product doesn’t work for people using it for removing labels because Goof Off melts some plastics. It evaporates quickly, and it seems to dissolve the sticker glue more than soften it. In other words, Goof Off is too strong.

About LA’s Totally Awesome

It’s a mainstay product at the 99 Cents Only stores. Just about everyone in Los Angeles County has bought a bottle, thinking it was going to be a fake 409 or a fake Fantastik. Well… it was, but it was actually better than both in some ways, mainly in that it wasn’t as strong as either.

Are you seeing a pattern here? Sometimes, you don’t need a strong product. You need something that won’t damage the object being cleaned.

The LATA value is obvious: a $1 bottle of cleaner that is the appropriate strength. The other cleaners are $3 a bottle or more, and need to be more useful in more situations.

About Glue Away

Glue Away is obviously a Goo Gone clone, down to the name. It’s a citrus cleaner, like Goo Gone.

I tried it out on two different stickers. The first was a product at Home Depot, and I think it may have been a return. I didn’t spray, but dripped the cleaner on it.

My general technique with both Glue Away and Goo Gone is to drip a few, or several, drops of the cleaner onto the sticker. I soak the paper, and then let it sit for at least half an hour. Sometimes, I let it sit overnight.

Glue Away was oilier than Goo Gone. It was thicker, almost gel-like, so I had to use a paper towel to spread the fluid all over the sticker. Also, it didn’t seem to migrate under the sticker as quickly or completely as Goo Gone.

I also tried it on a prescription bottle, to remove the sticker. It worked very well here. It left more residue than Goo Gone, though. It was slick and oily like flypaper, but not as sticky. So, you need to use a rag or paper towel to clean up, and finish the job.

I tried it on books, to remove the Goodwill stickers. It worked, but left behind some residue. I let it sit a couple hours. Then, I peeled it. I had to use a paper towel with some Glue Away on it to remove the bits of leftover glue.

So, I have some complaints, but I think Glue Away is still a great product. It will threaten Goo Gone in ways that Goof Off cannot. It’s that good.

How Does it Compare?

Glue Away works. However, it’s messier than Goo Gone.

Glue Away’s characteristics, compared to Goo Gone:

  • It doesn’t damage the plastic.
  • It soaks into the label, softens the glue, making it easy to peel off the sticker.
  • It evaporates slowly, but, maybe a little too slowly. It also leaves behind some oil that may or may not evaporate.

I would give the prize to Goo Gone, but if you aren’t near a store that sells Goo Gone (Kmart, Home Depot), and you are near a 99 Cents Only store, just get the Glue Away.

Conversely, if you have Goo Gone nearby, just get it. It costs $3 to $4, versus Glue Away at $1. The driving will probably eat up any cost savings.

Goo Gone is better than Glue Away, but it’s not that much better.

Glue Away is cheaper than Goo Gone, but not that much cheaper. The way I use Goo Gone, by dripping onto a label rather than soaking a rag, saves the Goo Gone. I will take more than a year to use a bottle.

However, if you have lots of sticker cleaning needs, get Goo Gone, and get it by the gallon. The way Goo Gone evaporates makes it a great product that lets you peel stickers, and then put the item into inventory or into service, without needing to wipe leftover cleaner away.

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