Mayor Bass urges tenants to not ‘self-evict’ ahead of back rent deadline

Some Los Angeles tenants who didn’t pay rent during the pandemic could be facing eviction in August

Payments missed between Mar. 1, 2020 and Sept. 30, 2021 are due on August 1. L.A. City Council approved this on Oct. 4 after voting to lift COVID-19 renter eviction protections on Feb. 1.

Mayor Karen Bass Shutterstock_2227317561 “We are working around the clock to ensure that L.A. tenants know their rights and that resources are available to help in this difficult time,” Mayor Karen Bass said during a press conference Monday.

City Councilwoman Nithya Raman echoed that statement.

“One of the most devastating parts of this work is that the people who need support the most often don’t know about the resources that are available to them,” she said.

The Mayor’s Office proposed using funds from Measure ULA, a.k.a. the “mansion” tax, to help tenants catch up on back rent and avoid evictions.  It also includes more than $18 million for a short-term emergency assistance program, which would allow low-income tenants to apply for up to six months’ worth of back rent. It also includes another $23 million for an eviction defense and prevention program.

“Our message today to Angelinos is clear, do not self-evict.  If you receive a notice, file a response,” she said.

Bass said it’s important not only to protect tenants but landlords as well.

Daniel Yukelson, the executive director of the Apartment Association of Greater Los Angeles, told KNX News’ Jon Baird that he doesn’t think mass evictions will happen and that some landlords may strike a deal with tenants.

“Typically there’s a deal that gets worked out outside of court and so bad actors who haven’t paid their rent for a couple of years get to walk with a little bit of cash and a lot of debt that gets forgiven,” he said.

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