Inglewood Mayor James Butts sent a STRONG message to property investors in the city of Inglewood. The message was simple.
Investors will NOT have leverage over long-term residents.Mayor James Butts
During a nearly three (3) hour regular city council meeting, the Inglewood city council heard from dozens of residents, about the rent stabilization ordinance, introduced by Mayor Butts and how the proposed 8% rent cap would disproportionately effect them.
Twins Julia and Tiffany Wallace have helped organize the Inglewood Tenants Union and are weekly speakers in favor of rent control. Julia has keenly watched the council agenda and noticed it changed three times since it was first posted last Friday.
Former Inglewood Senator Rod Wright implored the council to be fair to owners, as he is owner of multiple properties in the city and discussed how repairs would be too costly and must be passed on to tenants. He is regularly seen zipping through town in a car that costs in excess of $100,000.
Before voting on the ordinance, Mayor Butts called for a motion to make amendments which 2UrbanGirls found to be a great compromise for both renters and owners.
- Properties located at 435 Regent and 621 E. 99th Street are exempt from the ordinance as they have already entered into agreements with the city that provides for scheduled rent increases and relocation assistance in the amount of $10,000 to current residents.
- Rent increases are capped at 5% per year or CPI if greater, however, if the owner wants to raise the rent by 8%, to cover major repairs, said repairs would have to be vetted by the city of Inglewood, and after amortization of the costs, rent increases would revert back to 5%.
- If property ownes have rents, less than 80% of current market rate, they can increase rents by 8%, until they reach 81% of market rate.
- Relocation assistance will be extended to those who decline the rent increases.
What was most visible, and disturbing to residents viewing the live Facebook feed, was the absence of District 4 Councilman Ralph Franklin, whose district is the epicenter of new development. He too has sent a strong message that he does NOT stand with Inglewood renters and he does NOT support the rent ordinance that members of the community worked so hard to obtain. One would also believe he does not support Mayor Butts nor his councilmates in doing right by the 60% of the city’s residents who are renters.
Now this council MUST do right by city employees and give them annual cost of living increases (COLA) of either 5% or the CPI, whichever is greater, as Mayor Butts is fully and knowingly aware that salaries are NOT keeping up with inflation.
The city’s master fee schedule is adjusted annually for inflation, rent can now go up 5% per year, and city employees salaries need to do the same. Especially considering Mayor Butts is heaping enormous amounts of money on some city employees. In fact, employee unions should DEMAND the COLA’s.
Councilman Franklin regularly misses meetings, that are of significant importance to residents, choosing to not vote rather than explain his decisions to the public.
In short, Councilman Franklin, your times up.