L.A. Supervisors Approve New Rent Caps After Prop. 10 Defeat

One week after California voters rejected a statewide ballot measure that would have allowed for the expansion of rent control, Los Angeles County supervisors took it upon themselves to enact rent caps of their own.

By a 4-1 vote Nov. 13, the Board authorized a temporary 3% cap on rentals in unincorporated areas — a move that could impact some 20,000 renters, according to the ordinance’s main proponent Supervisor Sheila Kuehl. Katherine Barger was the lone dissenter.

Opponents of the cap argued that the failure of Proposition 10 shows voters aren’t in favor of rent control measures. Landlords have said the move will make it more difficult for them to stay afloat and will contribute to a housing and construction shortage that sends prices upward.

Supervisor Mark Ridley Thomas and others have countered that voters who rejected Proposition 10 were confused by deceptive advertising. Too many current renters are being gouged or evicted, they say, and are in desperate need of protection.

The new rent limits are expected to take effect Dec. 20 and would be retroactive, dating back to Sept. 11.