Just Cause Eviction in Marin

Chances to Learn About Just Cause for Eviction

2 public workshops coming up; County researching more fair housing policy

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San Rafael, CA – Two chances to learn more about a potential new tenant protection policy are coming up September 5 and 6 in San Geronimo and Marin City, respectively, hosted by the Marin County Community Development Agency (CDA). The meetings will serve as public informational sessions before the topic is brought before the Marin County Board of Supervisors the following week.

The Board plans to consider a policy that would require a clear reason – called just cause – before a tenant can be evicted from rental housing. Just cause has been studied as part of a larger series of affordable housing and tenant protection measures the Board has been working on since late 2015. Those measures reflect the growing housing crisis in Marin as well as the County’s interest in advancing social equity through its policies and programs. Just cause policies typically are created as a tool to address tenant displacement in low-vacancy rental markets like Marin’s.

At a June 2018 workshop on fair housing and historical segregation patterns in Marin County, the Board decided to consider just cause later in the summer. Housing measures already approved and in place now are source of income protection for tenants, mandatory mediation for tenant-landlord dispute resolution, and partnerships to encourage landlords to rent to those who need shelter the most. All the measures only affect housing in the unincorporated parts of Marin; towns and cities create their own housing policies.

The Board has scheduled a public workshop on just cause for 5:30 p.m. September 11 in the Board chamber of the Marin County Civic Center in San Rafael. To prepare, CDA is offering opportunities to learn more about just cause on September 5 at the San Geronimo Valley Community Center and on September 6 at the Bayside Martin Luther King Jr. Academy in Marin City. The 6:30 p.m. meetings, which will include Spanish interpretation, will consist of an overview of just cause policies established in other California jurisdictions and time for questions and answers.

After a brief staff presentation at each gathering, County staff will listen to public input and answer as many questions as possible. CDA is preparing a staff report and related documents to bring before the Board in advance of its September 11 workshop.

Materials are available on the CDA website, including answers to frequently asked questions and sample ordinances. Anyone may subscribe to receive e-mailed notifications regarding the availability of the staff report and to stay informed about housing-related issues.

Posted by
Melanie Nathan

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