Tenant advocates are asking Mountain View officials to reject a proposed ballot measure that seeks to weaken the city's rent control law. On Monday, 18 residents filed a complaint to the city attorney alleging the proposed ballot language contains misleading statements that must be corrected before the initiative can begin gathering signatures.
In particular, tenant advocates took issue with assertions made in the proposed ballot language that rent control is draining money from the city's general fund. This seems to be a reference to a $1 million loan the city was obligated to make to help launch the program after its passage. Rent control advocates point out that loan has been repaid in full, and they say it is false to claim the program will take any more money from the city.
The rent control program is funded through an annual fee on apartments.
The group Measure V Too Costly submitted the proposed voter initiative to the city on March 30. Members describe it as a sensible set of reforms that would fix major flaws in the city's rent control regime. But opponents say the measure's language would actually result in repealing most of the tenant protections approved by voters in November 2016.
Mountain View's city attorney has until next week to review the submitted ballot language and issue a summary of its provisions. After that step, organizers can begin the process of gathering signatures to put the measure on the November ballot.