Renter’s Coalition Submits Petition

 

Charter amendment moves ahead

The Alameda Renters Coalition (ARC) submitted its signatures for its rent adjustment ordinance the “Alameda Renter Protection and Community Stabilization Charter Amendment” to city officials on Tuesday, May 24.

The ARC says it has collected enough valid signatures to get the amendment on the November ballot. 

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

According to Alameda city laws, once an initiative is filed with the Alameda city clerk’s office, the author has 180 days to collect 6,461 signatures, or 15 percent of Alameda’s voter population, according to the city clerk’s office. ARC filed its amendment on Feb. 29. ARC officials said they hoped to collect 9,000 signatures by April 23, just in case some of the signatures were disallowed by the city (“Renters Turn Up Heat,” March 3). 

Once the petition is returned to the city clerk’s office, the petition is under a 30-day review to make sure everything is accurate and all signatures are from 
Alameda residents.

To obtain the signatures ARC members roamed the Island to find displeased Alameda renters. 

“Alamedans are stressed about how much their rents are rising,” said Monty Heying, a signature gather. “They need to feel secure in their homes and are looking to ARC’s ballot initiative establishing rent control and for cause evictions to make this happen.”

Once the city approves the amendment filing, ARC will turn its attention to getting enough votes to pass the amendment on Election Day. 

“Training the volunteers and collecting the signatures was an amazing experience,” said Eric Strimling, ARC’s communications director. “We are excited to get started on voter registration, our next step towards winning the November election. More than half of all Alameda residents are renters, and we need to get them registered and out to the polls.”

ARC members held a rally on May 24 at the City Hall lawn to make people aware of ARC complaints. ARC objects to the current rent ordinance that has no rent increase cap. The charter should cap increases at 65 percent of the Consumer Price Index. They also want more limitations on landlords’ right to evict on “no cause” evictions. 

The city should announce whether or not ARC’s amendment was approved by June 23.