LA landlords would have to accept voucher tenants under City Council plan

The proposed ordinance, which advanced this week, is aimed at cracking down on renter discrimination

Apr.April 18, 2019 12:08 PM
Councilman Paul Krekorian

Amid a housing crisis and skyrocketing rents, Los Angeles’ low-income tenants are finding it increasingly difficult to secure a place to live as landlords favor high-paying renters over tenants with Section 8 vouchers.

That may change soon. This week, the City Council advanced a law that would prohibit landlords from refusing tenants with Section 8 vouchers, the Los Angeles Times reported. The ordinance is aimed at increasing protections from discrimination against those renters.

It doesn’t directly address rising rents, but would prohibit blanket bans on vouchers and outlaw advertisements that say vouchers are not accepted.

Housing advocates say bans on vouchers are often used to discriminate by race or income.

According to research by the Urban Institute, 76 percent of landlords in L.A. County with units affordable to voucher tenants refused to accept them. The Times reported that nearly half the people who received Section 8 vouchers in L.A. saw them expire in 2017 before finding a place to live. Six years earlier, just 18 percent of the vouchers expired.

Councilman Paul Krekorian, who proposed the ordinance, said low voucher usage rates could mean the city receives less funding in the future from the federal program. Experts have said federal subsidies aren’t keeping pace with rising rents.

If the final ordinance is passed, it would take effect in 2020. Other cities like Santa Monica have approved similar laws to eliminate discrimination. [LAT]Gregory Cornfield

Related Articles

The Gabay brothers want to bring back District Square (Credit: Department of City Planning via LA Times)

Gabay lawsuit to revive District Square may have merit

From left: Community Preservation Partners President Anand Kannan and Jonathan Rose Companies founder: Jonathan F.P. Rose, with the Golden West Tower Apartments (Credit: Google Maps and iStock)

Affordable developer teams up to buy Torrance senior housing complex

Regulatory fees are culprit in housing building costs (Credit: iStock)

It costs $500K to build one affordable housing unit in LA

A rendering of the project (Credit: Ian Espinoza Associates vis Urbanize)

Westfield adds affordable units to $1.5B Promenade redevelopment

Developers Mark and Arman Gabay are suing the city for rejecting their 577-unit District Square project in South L.A. (Credit: Department of City Planning via LA Times)

Gabays sue LA after it rejects their 577-unit resi project

Dr. Jayasinghe and a rendering of the project (Credit: Metro via Curbed)

Metro rejects plastic surgeon’s 907-unit development in Westlake

LA city council members want to close “loophole” in rent control law

LA measure would make it tougher for landlords to force out tenants for renovations

LA Chamber of Commerce, under CEO Maria Salinas,  explores ballot measure doubling density of resi buildings. (Photo credit: iStock Photo, LA Chamber of Commerce.)

LA Chamber of Commerce explores doubling density of resi buildings