Published by Kartik Subramaniam
We wrote recently about potential updates to Section 8 housing law in California. S.B. 1053, sponsored by Sen. Mark Leno (D-San Francisco) would have made it illegal for a landlord to deny a housing applicant because they receive Section 8 assistance. This bill failed to move out of the Appropriations Committee, ending the possibility of the bill passing and becoming law.
The California Apartment Association (CAA) had opposed the proposed legislation for a few reasons. Owners and operators working with Section 8 have to abide by a different set of regulations than those strictly governed by state and local law, so CAA thought this regulatory burden should remain voluntary. These landlords must also cooperate with the local housing agency to receive their payment and many landlords believe this complex system (coupled with accusations of government inefficiency in payment) decrease the economic viability of their properties. Lastly, the cost of insurance for Section 8 voucher properties can be higher (as much as 20% higher, according to the CAA).
These concerns prompted the CAA to oppose the legislation. For now, Section 8 policies are unchanged in California.