San Francisco Supervisors on Tuesday unanimously approved an ordinance to provide funding for landlords whose tenants have been unable to pay rent as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to Supervisor Dean Preston, who authored the legislation, San Francisco landlords have lost as much as $32 million monthly in unpaid rent as tenants continue to face financial hardships due to the pandemic.
Under the ordinance, owners with properties that have 10 or fewer units and have voluntarily waived the debt obligation from tenants impacted by COVID-19 could receive between 50 and 65 percent of the rent owed. The funding, however, is contingent on the passage of city Proposition I during next week's elections. Prop. I, or the Real Estate Transfer Tax, would increase the property transfer tax rate for properties over $10 million.
"We are providing a roadmap for recovery, and that means making sure renters and small landlords are not left out in the cold if tenants can't pay rent because of COVID," Preston said in a statement.
"San Franciscans have a choice: Leave vulnerable tenants saddled by rent debt and small property owners at risk of default, or slightly increase taxes on billionaire real estate investors to help pay for our recovery efforts."
Also during Tuesday's meeting, supervisors unanimously approved Mayor London Breed's nomination to appoint Rachael Tanner to the Planning Commission, the seven-member body that helps guide the city's growth and development.
Tanner is currently assistant director of planning and development services for the city of Palo Alto and is also a commissioner of the San Francisco Board of Appeals. Once she joins the Planning Commission, Tanner will resign from the Board of Appeals.
"Rachael is experienced in city planning, has a demonstrated commitment to equity, and will bring her own experience living and working in the southeast part of San Francisco to the commission," Breed said following the vote. "I am confident Rachael will be a valuable member of the Commission and will contribute to our efforts to make San Francisco a more, livable, affordable, and resilient city for generations to come."