Oakland OK's Emergency Moratorium on Rent Increases

The vote puts a 90-day moratorium on rental increases

The Oakland City Council unanimously passed a 90-day moratorium on residential rent increases early Wednesday during a meeting packed with hundreds of vocal residents demanding elected leaders deal with the city housing crisis.

The moratorium will not apply to rental units built after 1983, which are protected by state law.

Many people who spoke late Tuesday spoke in favor of an emergency moratorium on rent increases, where more than 1,000 Oakland residents per month are being served with eviction notices.

"Many of the evictions taking place are actually illegal," Councilwoman Rebecca Kaplan said.

Residents complained to the council that they feel like the high prices are giving them few options. Rents in the city have jumped so quickly, more than 13 percent in the past year.

"Nobody used to want to live here," said Marline Davis, 55, who has lived in the same rental unit for 20 years. "Now because of gentrification, everybody wants to live here and push us out."

She added: "Now it's getting to the point they want to sell the units and I have to move. Where can I go in Oakland?"

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