Monday, May 23, 2016

Alameda renters group to submit more than 8,000 signatures for fall ballot measure

Members of the Alameda Renters Coalition last
year demonstrating in front of Alameda City Hall.
ALAMEDA | Alameda's rent control ballot measure takes a big step Tuesday when the grassroots renters group behind the proposal submits more than 8,000 signatures to the city clerk’s office.

The Alameda Renters Coalition (ARC), the group behind the rent control measure, only needs around 4,600 valid signatures to ensure inclusion on the November ballot. The final number is not yet known since volunteers are still gathering additional signatures, as of Monday night, said Eric Strimling, ARC’s communication director.

"This is a moment of great celebration and gratitude to Alamedans for their support in putting this initiative on the ballot,” said another spokesperson Catherine Pauling. “It will establish the much needed renter protections City Hall has been reluctant to provide."

The renter’s measure would institute a cap on annual rent increases equal to 65 percent of inflation and eliminate no-cause evictions. It’s chances next November are buoyed by the fact Alameda renters make up roughly 55 percent of the city’s population.

ARC will formally submit the signatures to the city clerk’s office on Tuesday following a rally in front of Alameda City Hall, starting at 2 p.m.

The renters groups filed an intent to place the measure on the fall ballot last Jan. 29. In the months since, volunteers gathering signatures on street corners and shopping centers have been a fixture around Alameda.

In addition, two other rent-related measures are also in the signature-gathering phase. One backed by landlords would effectively ban rent control in Alameda, while another, proposed by Alameda Councilmember Tony Daysog would tweak the rent stabilization ordinance approved by the City Council last March in favor of small-time landlords who live on the island.


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