This past Sunday was the last day for Governor Brown to veto legislation, marking the official end to the legislative year. While we held out hope that he would veto SB 655 (Mitchell), regarding mold in rental housing, he signed the bill late Friday afternoon.
We would like to thank the hundreds of members who responded to our call-to-action and urged the Governor to veto this flawed piece of legislation. SB 655, makes housing substandard if, in the judgment of a code enforcement officer, there is any visible mold growth. SDCAA will begin work on a white paper regarding the new law, set to take effect on January 1, 2016. We will also review our existing Mold/Mildew Addendum and make any necessary changes.
The Governor also signed AB 1448 (Lopez), a bill that will now allow tenants to have clotheslines in certain types of units with landlord approval.
SDCAA initially opposed the bill as introduced because it would have prohibited a lease or other covenant from restricting or prohibiting the use of clotheslines and drying racks. SDCAA expressed concerns regarding damage that could occur to buildings as well as concerns of moisture damage to patios and balconies. The bill was later amended as a result of SDCAA opposing the bill to require landlord approval prior to using a clothesline. Additionally, clotheslines may only be placed in a tenant’s private area which is defined as “an outdoor area or an area in the tenant’s premises enclosed by a wall or fence with access from a door of the premises.” With these changes, we removed our opposition. SDCAA will also create a white paper for this new law.
2016 will see the return of bills that did not get completely worked out this year, including SB 7 (Wolk) regarding water submeters and AB 551 (Nazarian) regarding bed bugs.
SDCAA worked closely with the authors and other stakeholders to improve these pieces of legislation. In the end agreement could not be reached on SB 7, yet Senator Wolk still pushed forward, but ultimately the bill fell of shy of the needed votes to pass. We were very close to reaching agreement on the AB 551, however, more work remains and Assembly Member Nazarian agreed to make AB 551 a two-year bill. SDCAA thanks the Assembly Member for not forcing the issue and allowing all interested parties to work on amendments until we are all content with the final bill language.
Read below for more new laws impacting rental housing.
Originally posted 9-15-15
Friday was the deadline for the Senate and Assembly to pass bills to the Governor in hopes they are signed into law. The Governor has signed several bills already and others are on his desk awaiting signature or veto. SDCAA strongly opposed SB 655 (Mitchell), which makes housing substandard if, in the judgment of a code enforcement officer, there is any visible or otherwise demonstrable mold growth. We are currently working on securing a veto of this bill. The bills below are now law.
AB 1 (Brown) – Drought: local governments: fines: Prohibits a city and/or county from imposing a fine under any ordinance for a failure to water a lawn or having a brown lawn during a period for which the Governor has issued a proclamation of a state of emergency based on drought conditions. (Support)
AB 418 (Chiu) – Tenancy: termination: victims of violent crime: Provisions of existing law which allow a tenant to notify the landlord in writing that he or she or a household member was a victim of an act of domestic violence or sexual assault and that the tenant intends to terminate the tenancy, have been extended. Additionally, victims may now provide 14-days’ notice instead of 30-days’ notice. (Support)
AB 447 (Maienschein) – Property insurance: discrimination: Prohibits discrimination based on renters' receipt of "Section 8" or related public rent subsidies for purposes of accepting applications for, issuing policies of, canceling policies of property insurance. (Support)
AB 1448 (Lopez) – Solar energy systems/clothes lines: This bill would require a landlord to permit a tenant to utilize a clothesline or drying rack, as defined, approved by the landlord in the tenant’s private area, as defined, if certain conditions are met, including, among others, that the clothesline or drying rack will not interfere with the maintenance of the rental property and the use of the clothesline or drying rack does not violate reasonable time or location restrictions imposed by the landlord. (Neutral)
SB 328 (Hueso) – Pesticide Notice: This bill, with certain exceptions, would require the landlord or the landlord’s authorized agent to provide a tenant and any tenant of adjacent units, with specified notice of the use of pesticides at the dwelling unit if the landlord or authorized agent applies any pesticide without a licensed pest control operator. The bill, with certain exceptions, would require the posting of a similar notice at least 24 hours prior to application of any pesticide to a common area without a licensed pest control operator, unless the pest poses an immediate threat to health and safety, in which case the notice would be required to be posted as soon as practicable, but not later than one hour after the pesticide is applied. (Neutral)
SB 655 (Mitchell) – Mold: Substandard Housing: This bill makes housing if, in the judgment of a code enforcement officer, there is any visible mold growth, excluding the presence of mold that is minor and found on surfaces that can accumulate moisture as part of their properly functioning and intended use. (Oppose)
SB 761 (Hall) – Advertising: Internet private residence rental listings: Hosting platforms for short-term rentals, such as AirBnB, will now have to post a notice on their websites letting hosts know that if they are a tenant, they should check their lease to see if they are allowed to sublet, because if not, they could be evicted. (Support)
AB 349 (Gonzalez) – Common interest developments: property use and maintenance: This law makes void and unenforceable any provision of the governing documents or architectural or landscaping guidelines or policies that prohibits use of artificial turf or any other synthetic surface that resembles grass. It is also prohibited to require that an owner of a separate interest remove or reverse water-efficient landscaping measures, installed in response to a declaration of a state of emergency, upon the conclusion of the state of emergency. (Neutral)