City of Richmond to be sued over rent control measure passed in November

The California Apartment Association will file a complaint against the city of Richmond Friday morning in Contra Costa County, regarding the rent control measure that was passed in November, according to the Mayor's office.

Attorney Stephen Pahl of Pahl & McCay said Measure L, which will establish rent control in the city and prohibit landlords from evicting tenants without cause, was "unconstitutional" for a variety of reasons and
that it was "sloppily drafted."

"For one thing, the ordinance as drafted basically mandates that landlords must accept subletting regardless of credit score, gang affiliation, or anything of the sort. As a landlord [you would] lose complete control of the property until the tenant decided to either give it back, or be evicted for nonpayment."

Richmond Mayor Tom Butt said that he expected something like this to happen, and has not been shy on his opposition of rent control in the past.

"I have never been in favor of rent control. I am still not in favor of rent control, but the people voted and they're going to get it, unless it can be challenged legally."

Pahl said he intended to file the complaint Friday morning at 10 a.m. in Department 17, Room 301 before the Honorable Judge Barry Goode.

Richmond City Attorney Bruce Goodmiller was not immediately available for comment.