For a more in depth discussion of Proposition 10, and the ten other initiatives on the ballot this November, join us for the California Initiative Review Forum in the Lecture Hall at McGeorge School of Law on October 24 from 5:30 – 7:30pm. Details on the event here.

Proposition 10: Affordable Housing Act

Current Law

  • In 1996, California passed a statewide moderate limit on otherwise extreme vacancy control that was put in place in the 1980s.
  • While cities and counties continue to maintain the ability to implement local rent control laws, they must follow the parameters established in the Costa-Hawkins Rental Housing Act.
  • At the heart of Costa-Hawkins are a number of basic rules: housing constructed after 1995 must be exempt from local rent controls; new housing that was already exempt from a local rent control law in place before February 1, 1995, must remain exempt; single family homes and other units like condominiums that are separate from the title to any other dwelling units must be exempt from local rent controls; rental property owners must have the ability to establish their own rental rates when dwelling units change tenancy.

Proposed Law

  • The measure repeals several sections of the California Civil Code, sections 1954.50 through 1954.53, which place limits on local rent control laws where cities and counties can regulate rents for any housing.
  • The section added to the California Civil code reads, “a city, county, or city and county shall have the authority to adopt a local charter provision, ordinance or regulation that governs a landlord’s right to establish and increase rental rates on a dwelling or housing unit.” Under this added provision, cities and counties can limit how much a landlord may increase rents when a new renter moves in.
  • Also, the second section added ensures that the measure itself does not make any changes to local rent control laws and does not impact the “fair rate of return” that property owners are allowed under past court rulings.

Policy Considerations

YES on Proposition 10 NO on Proposition 10
A YES vote means California law would not limit the kinds of rent control laws cities, counties, or other municipalities could have.

  • Allowing cities to impose rent control will help mitigate the housing crisis
  • Four in ten households spend 30% or more of household income on housing
  • Reducing cost of rent will give renters more money to spend on other goods and services, boosting the economy

Workers are forced to live far away from their place of employment

A NO vote means California law would not limit the kinds of rent control laws cities, counties, or other municipalities could have.

  • Rent control will drive up housing costs and force more people out of their homes
  • Giving local governments more power over the real estate market will exacerbate the housing crisis

Taxpayers will pay for the legal costs of defending local rent control regulations in court

Analysis of Proposition 10 by Henry Mantel and Sebastian Silveira.