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City calls for apartment rents to roll back

Original post made on Apr 7, 2017

Owners of nearly 15,000 apartments in Mountain View are now obligated to immediately lower their rents to October 2015 rates, following news that a judicial hold on a citywide rent control program has been lifted, according to city Housing Department officials.


Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, April 7, 2017, 1:58 PM

Comments (38)

Posted by Whismanian
a resident of Whisman Station
on Apr 7, 2017 at 2:25 pm

Why aren't duplexes covered for the rental rollback? Our landlord raises the rent every year $100 and then started $200 last year for "maintenance" he says which he doesn't do. Does the rent restriction increase between 2 and 5% apply to rented duplexes?


Posted by Whismanian
a resident of Whisman Station
on Apr 7, 2017 at 2:26 pm

Forgot to mention he raised it four months earlier and went month to month, taking us off the lease and we have lived there for 10 years.


Posted by @Wismanian
a resident of Slater
on Apr 7, 2017 at 2:32 pm

MV Tenants Coalition website FAQs: Web Link

Exemptions
Some rental housing is NOT covered by either Just Cause or Rent Stabilization: Single family homes, condos, units first occupied after 2/1/1995, units built after effective date of the ordinance, granny (“in law”) units, duplexes, hotels, hospitals, dorms, subsidized housing, etc.


Posted by Gary
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Apr 7, 2017 at 2:33 pm

Gary is a registered user.

Duplexes could not be covered under a state law passed in 1995.

As to the Restraining Order to which the City Attorney stipulated when the lawsuit was filed in December, the City appears to take the position that there is no rebate owned to affected renters. It is an interesting question. Renters should talk to the interveners in the lawsuit about that issue.


Posted by mv renter
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 7, 2017 at 2:50 pm

It is exceedingly unlikely that landlords will simply comply and roll back the rates. We can expect them to get creative in getting around Measure V. What's stopping them, for example, from adding new amenities charges or finding reasons for nuisance evictions? With near-unlimited demand for housing, they are on longer end of the lever and we can expect them to exact revenge for this measure.


Posted by Rodger
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Apr 7, 2017 at 3:06 pm

This taking other people's property it can't really be legal
If it is I want to roll back restaurant prices, labor prices, repair prices, city fees prices etc etc etc.


Posted by greedy landlord
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Apr 7, 2017 at 3:29 pm

Can we boot everyone out, remodel and set a new market base rate? Here comes monthly inspection fees, yard maintenance fee etc. not incl. of rent


Posted by lycosmom
a resident of Shoreline West
on Apr 7, 2017 at 3:41 pm

Thank you, Wismanian, for postng information about exceptions to Measure V. Where did you find this information?


Posted by Alex M.
a resident of Willowgate
on Apr 7, 2017 at 3:43 pm

If any renter feels they are owed a refund for "overpayment" since January, as discussed in the comments of another article, they are welcome to deduct that amount from next month's rent - and see how fast they get evicted for underpayment. It's pretty clear that Measure V is considered in effect as of April 5, not sooner.


Posted by Tears
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Apr 7, 2017 at 4:12 pm

The landlord tears in this comments section are so delicious. Just admit you got greedy, overreached, and had to be beaten back through the will of the people.

Now all you can do is try to fantasize about the ways in which you'll get back at your tenants, without realizing that this impulse is exactly what put you in this position in the first place.


Posted by psr
a resident of The Crossings
on Apr 7, 2017 at 4:44 pm

psr is a registered user.

@Tears

Not a problem. The attitude of people like you, who think you are entitled to tell other people what they can do with their own property, is what got us a Trump presidency. So far, we have gotten a SCOTUS justice that understands that he should follow the rule of law, not emotion, a chance to eliminate the debacle that is Obamacare and a likely end to the Estate Tax.

Those are tears of joy, not sorrow.


Posted by Tears
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Apr 7, 2017 at 4:49 pm

[Post removed due to disrespectful comment or offensive language]


Posted by The Truth
a resident of North Whisman
on Apr 7, 2017 at 6:29 pm

The Truth is a registered user.

The more business savvy landlords will be fine, because they would have, long before Measure V, upgraded their properties and attracted the cream of the tenant crop. These tenants, although they did not need the assistance V provides them, are indifferent about it and will move out and buy a home when their life situation dictates it. In my case, only half my units are affected and of these, the compound annual increase in rents have been(as if it was done every year) a shade under 4% per annum which lines up with V. The reason increases are low is base rents when these tenants signed up represented an adequate return on investment for price paid for building and upgrades. Increases cover inflation and cost of doing business. This was acceptable due to appreciation and the fact this was one asset in the portfolio. I expect most of these tenants to move out on their own in 3 years or so and the cycle will repeat. The only difference will be an even more attractive tenant pool with diminished competition, so in that way, Measure V will help landlords in my situation. What is harmed is asset appreciation/valuation but if you were in it for the cash flow and principal preservation, it is still an ok deal, though the asset's value itself is now diminished (relative to another community without rent control).

The landlords that are in trouble over this are the ones that had low standards and had low base rents and then tried to charge top tier rents when not warranted or the ones that bought high on speculation and now have been capped with respect to revenue and ability to repay their loans. I can't relate to those people nor can I feel sympathy for them.

This whole deal of rent control is unfortunate and undesirable as no Mountaun View real estate investor likes their investment being lumped with East Palo Alto and Richmond, but, when life gives you lemons, make some lemonade, a properly run property in MV generates enough cash flow to invest in another non rent controlled community. I just wish the tenants coalition conducted themselves with more dignity, but when its mouthpiece is dropping F-bombs in City Council meetings and refuses to apologize, their conduct is not surprising.


Posted by Tears
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Apr 7, 2017 at 6:58 pm

Yeah, if only the tenants had conducted themselves with dignity and sued the city like the CAA. All CAA members should be ashamed of their membership and be held rightfully accountable for their corrupt interference.

Instead they'll just keep on fantasizing about the revenge they'll take out on their tenants. A real upstanding group, if you ask me.


Posted by The Truth
a resident of North Whisman
on Apr 7, 2017 at 7:36 pm

The Truth is a registered user.

The CAA is nothing more than an ordinary trade organization. They advocate for the interests of its members in a legal and professional manner. Josh Howard represented us well. If he or anyone at CAA ever went to a City Council meeting and spoke out of order with extreme profanity and subsequently refused to apologize, I would cheerfully cancel my membership. The least the tenants coalition could do is handle itself with class.

For any of you who are gainfully employed, your employer likely belongs to a trade organization, it allows people to run their business while delegating the political, non day to day operating issues to others. With payment of dues, they are expected them to conduct themselves with professionalism and dignity, which they have done in spades. Can't say the same thing for the tenants coalition, if they had any standards or integrity, they would have terminated their mouthpiece on the spot after not apologizing for dropping f-bombs out of order in a heavily attended Council Meeting.

Stay classy tenants coalition.


Posted by Tears
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Apr 7, 2017 at 7:57 pm

All the CAA wanted to do was preserve the right for landlords to gouge their tenants and evict them for whatever reason they wanted. To achieve this goal, they spent massive amounts of money on the election, and then sued our wonderful city when the election couldn't be bought. Again, any CAA member paid for them to sue Mountain View, and should be held accountable for the excess rent paid and their corrupt interference.

But, at least they did it while wearing a suit.

And now all the landlords can do is sit here posting about how they'll get revenge on their tenants. Stay classy, CAA.


Posted by The Business Man
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 7, 2017 at 9:41 pm

The Business Man is a registered user.

The City cannot restr4ict the rent ollback to only after April 5,

Why?

On April 5, 2017, the Santa Clara court denied the preliminary injunction sought by the CAA Attorney and the Intervening Attorney. This means the Temporary Restraining Order has been terminated.

Under section 1702(b)(1) of the CSFRA, tenants who still live in the same apartments they lived in back on October 19, 2015, are entitled to a “rollback” of their rent to their October 2015 levels. I lived in my unit since July 2007, before October 2015, and at that time my rent was $1300.00/month. However I have been paying $2,200./Month This whole year.

For that reason, starting on December 23rd, 2016, I have overpaid my rent because of the Temporary Restraining Order for 4 months to avoid having potential legal and residency problems with you. However now that the temporary restraining order is now terminated, Section 1720 states:

SECTION 1720. MAJORITY APPROVAL, EFFECTIVE DATE, EXECUTION.

This Amendment to the City Charter shall be effective only if approved by a majority of the voters voting thereon and shall go into effect ten (10) days after the vote is declared by the City Council. The Mayor and City Clerk are hereby authorized to execute this Article to give evidence of its adoption by the voters.

The fact is that on December 13th, the Certified Santa Clara Registrar of Voters results were adopted by the City Council, thus Section 1720 simply states that the measure is enforceable on December 23rd , 2016.

Even though the City Attorney stipulated to the TRO, the section 1719 of the CFSRA prevents the city from altering the CSFRA enforcement date in any way, this section states:

SECTION 1719. CODIFICATION

The City Clerk and the City Attorney shall take all steps necessary to ensure the proper and efficient codification of this Article into the Charter of the City of Mountain View. This authority shall include making any necessary revisions to numbering, revising or substituting any references herein to other provisions of Mountain View or State law, and similar non-substantive items. In exercising this authority, the City Clerk and City Attorney shall not alter the substantive provisions of this Article nor take any action that contradicts express terms and purpose of this Article.

For that reason, since I have now overpaid for my lawful rent by a difference of $900./ month starting on December 23rd, 2016, I am legally entitled to have that money returned to me, I expect a certified check issued in 10 days.

Further I will be paying my October 2015 monthly rent amount: $1,300.00 at the end of the month of April.

The City Attorney NOR the City Council have the ability to modify the enforcement date of the CSFRA. The court never issued an order stating that CSFRA was unconstitutional. The City Charter is COMPLETELY INTACT.

What is the City thinking it is doing? THe City Attorney, the City Manager, and the City Council is simply dictated by the language of CSFRA to enforce the Renbt Rollback to December 23,2016 unliess the the city can provide any statutory basis that a TRO can in fact modify the Charter. A TRO cannot do that, it could only maintain the status quo during its lifetime, once it dies the text of the CSFRA is restored. Only if the court ordered that the Section 1720 was in fact unconstitutional, can the city behave in this way due to section 1719.

This situation has become like the patients are operating the insane asylum. I want someone to look into what appears to be on it's face collusion between the City and the CAA in this matter. At the very least, the other intervening attorneys must be consulted prior to this action because they have legal authority to do so. This is because without the intervenors the City Attorney would have purposely provided inadequate representation.

The intervenors clearly demonstrated to the court the City Attorney's inability to perform her work, the court ordered that the new attorneys due to this problem

I cannot trust the City of Mountain View NOR the City Attorney because they have been found deficient enough to have the Santa Clara court allow intervention in the case by new attorneys. The Intervention was based on:

Section 387. (Amended by Stats. 1977, Ch. 450.)

Cite as: Cal. Civ. Proc. Code §387.

(b)If any provision of law confers an unconditional right to intervene or if the person seeking intervention claims an interest relating to the property to transaction which is the subject of the action AND THAT PERSON IS SO SITUATED THAT THE DISPOSITION OF THE ACTION MAY AS A PRACTICAL MATTER IMPAIR OR IMPEDE THAT PERSON’S ABILITY TO PROTECT THAT INTEREST, UNLESS THAT PERSON’S INTEREST IS ADEQUATELY REPRESENTED BY EXISTING PARTIES, THE COURT SHALL, UPON TIMELY APPLICATION, PERMIT THAT PERSON TO INTERVENE.( Web Link)

Thus the “opinion” of the city attorney is suspect. The fact was the City Attorney was not interested in defending the CSFRA from the beginning and has done so against her particular political interests in my opinion.

The simple truth is without the intervention, the City Attorney would have been able to continue to argue the case INADEQUATELY. So I agree with you that an independent attorney must provide some advice in this matter. It appears the City is still trying to gut their own City Charter


Posted by City Attorney
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 7, 2017 at 10:51 pm

Business Man,

Why don't you take the $780 you will get back for your April roll back and use that to hire a real attorney?

You are not qualified to assess the competence of Ms. Quinn nor have the ability to correctly interpret federal and state housing law.

Perhaps you should have agreed to meet with Ms. Quinn after she offered that at a recent Council meeting where you called her competence into question. It is gutless to rail on her and others (Mike Kasperzak) when you have no legitimate basis. You seem to be fueled by a combination of anger and false intellectual confidence which is not effective in meeting your objectives.

It is abundantly clear you are out of your depth, get professional help please.


Posted by Alex M.
a resident of Willowgate
on Apr 7, 2017 at 10:52 pm

@The Business Man:
Meh. You aren't an attorney. You have an interesting opinion, but the bottom line is that Measure V is considered to be in effect as of April 5, not January 1. That's the city's decision, and if you want to change their minds, you'll have to take the city to court, not your landlord. I honestly wish you good luck with trying to get a refund on your rent, but I'm skeptical you will succeed. Also remember, just because you send a letter to your landlord by certified mail doesn't obligate the landlord to respond to it. Your landlord will expect you to pay your rent in full (adjusted to October 15), and is unlikely to give you a refund unless compelled by a court order. If you attempt to deduct the refund yourself, you will likely be evicted quickly due to underpayment.


Posted by Anon
a resident of Rengstorff Park
on Apr 7, 2017 at 11:03 pm

The city of Mountain View has now limited the income of the real estate owners. Are they also going limit the yearly salary increases of the Googlers who earn $200k as well as roll back their salaries to 2015 levels of merely $185k ?


Posted by The Business Man
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 7, 2017 at 11:31 pm

The Business Man is a registered user.

City Attorney, and Alex M.

Wow, I must have addressed a sensitive subject. Aren't you even aware that the City Charter is equivalent to the City Constitution? It dictates what the City government can or cannot do. All I am doing is reading the text of the Charter Amendment which states:

SECTION 1720. MAJORITY APPROVAL, EFFECTIVE DATE, EXECUTION.

This amendment to the city charter SHALL be effective only if approved by a majority of the voters voting thereon and SHALL go into effect ten (10) days after the vote is declared by the city council. The mayor and city clerk are hereby authorized to execute this article to give evidence of its adoption by the voters.

Legally when the word SHALL is used it is a requirement to the City, it is not discretional, please refer to the rule is defined by the legal analysis that was written by Antonin Scalia in a book regarding interpreting the law. Here is the relevant part of this book:

“11. Mandatory/Permissive Canon

Mandatory words impose a duty; permissive words grant discretion.

The text of this canon is entirely clear, and its content so obvious as to be hardly worth the saying. The trouble comes in identifying which words are mandatory and which permissive. The traditional, commonly repeated rule is that shall is mandatory and may is permissive:

The tenant SHALL provide written notice of an intent to vacate no fewer than 30 days before moving. (This states an obligation.)

The tenant may vacate the premises on 30 days’ written notice. (This grants permission, with a condition.)

When drafters use shall and may correctly, the traditional rule holds—beautifully. But alas, drafters have been notoriously sloppy with their shalls, resulting in a morass of confusing decisions on the meanings of this modal verb. Volume 39 of Words and Phrases contains more than 55 pages of digested judicial holdings on the word—and the cases are anything but uniform. Have the courts been wayward in their holdings? Not really. The problem is that drafters have used the word improperly—even promiscuously. Consider the different types of sentences in which shall can appear. As you read the sentences, remember that SHALL ought to be replaceable by either HAS A DUTY TO OR IS REQUIRED TO:



Shall, in short, is a semantic mess. Black’s Law Dictionary records five meanings for the word.1

Responding to this sloppy usage, courts have treated shall as having variegated meanings. In the Supreme Court of the United States alone, the pronouncements on its meaning have been widely diverse:

• For existing rights, shall means “must,” but it need not be construed as mandatory when a new right is created.

“(Scalia, Antonin; Garner, Bryan A. (2012-07-05). Scalia and Garner's Reading Law: The Interpretation of Legal Texts (Kindle Locations 1820-1842). Thomson West. Kindle Edition.)

Blacks law dictionaries definition states:

What is SHALL?

AS USED IN STATUTES AND SIMILAR INSTRUMENTS, THIS WORD IS GENERALLY IMPERATIVE OR MANDATORY; but it may be construed as merely permissive or directory, (as equivalent to "may,") to carry out the legislative intention and In cases where no right or benefit to any one depends on its being taken in the imperative sense, and where no public or private right is impaired by its interpretation in the other sense. ALSO, AS AGAINST THE GOVERNMENT, "SHALL" IS TO BE CONSTRUED AS "MAY," UNLESS A CONTRARY INTENTION IS MANIFEST. See Wheeler v. Chicago, 24 111. 105, 76 Am. Dec. 736; People v. Chicago Sanitary Dist., 184 111. 597, 56 N. E. 9.".:;: Madison v. Daley (C. C.) 58 Fed. 753; Cairo & F. R. Co. v. Ilecht, 95 U. S. 170, 24 L. Ed. 423. SHAM PLEA. See PLEA. SHARE 1082 SHERIFF(Web Link

Given that the CSFRA is NOT LEGISLATION, the CSFRA cannot be construed as permissive nor directory, it cannot be construed as “may” by the city. Especially given that throughout the entire CSFRA, the intention was made in writing that the City was to have no discretion whatsoever in the implementation of the CSFRA. That was designated to the Board as an INDEPENDENT agency. Thus this is a simple situation to understand, you do not need to be a lawyer to see that this situation is simply not acceptable or allowed.

The fact is that on December 13th, the Certified Santa Clara Registrar of Voters results were adopted by the City Council, thus Section 1720 simply states that the measure is enforceable on December 23rd, 2016.

Even though the City Attorney stipulated to the TRO, the section 1719 of the CFSRA prevents the city from altering the CSFRA enforcement date in any way, this section states:

SECTION 1719. CODIFICATION

The City Clerk and the City Attorney shall take all steps necessary to ensure the proper and efficient codification of this Article into the Charter of the City of Mountain View. This authority shall include making any necessary revisions to numbering, revising or substituting any references herein to other provisions of Mountain View or State law, and similar non-substantive items. IN EXERCISING THIS AUTHORITY, THE CITY CLERK AND CITY ATTORNEY SHALL NOT ALTER THE SUBSTANTIVE PROVISIONS OF THIS ARTICLE NOR TAKE ANY ACTION THAT CONTRADICTS EXPRESS TERMS AND PURPOSE OF THIS ARTICLE.

Thus the simple fact is that the CITY CLERK AND CITY ATTORNEY has violated the CSFRA by in effect ALTERING THE SUBSTANTIVE PROVISIONS OF THIS ARTICLE AND TAKING ACTION THAT CONTRADICTS EXPRESS TERMS AND PURPOSE OF THIS ARTICLE.

It is simply written. It is NOT DIFFICULT to see what is going on.

The purpose of the CSFRA being a Charter Amendment was to prohibit the City government from having any authority to alter the NEW established rules by securing it. This situation simply requires a court order to suspend the section 1720 and 1719, or the City must wait until a measure is voted on in the next election to repeal it. This is simply common sense.

What we have here is a mutiny, and an intentional act to violate the City Charter. Especially when no language has been stricken by the court, AND the city cannot do so in any way.

I am going to contact the independent law resources but I am almost certain they will concur with this observation.


Posted by The Business Man
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 8, 2017 at 12:24 pm

The Business Man is a registered user.

Dear Mountain View City Council,

I respectfully demand that the City Council instruct the City Government to comply with the entire CSFRA give the fact that the Temporary Restraining Order is gone, AND that the court never struck down any part of the CSFRA. The TRO was intended to establish status quo, it does NOT alter the language of the Charter.

I have been forced to do this because the City Government is materially in violation of the Charter Amendment at this time. How? First the City Government has no authority to alter the fact that the TRO does not rewrite the Charter Amendment and second the Charter Amendment is still currently constitutional in its entirety.

The City Government has taken actions without a legal basis to revise the date of enforcement and to attempt to rewrite the mandated actions made in the CSFRA.

Specifically, the City Government was fully aware that the City Council did certify the election results on December 13th, 2016. Section 1720 made it a requirement, nonetheless the TRO that the Charter Amendment be entered and codified. That is because a TRO only suspended enforcement of the CSFRA due to the negligent acts of the City Attorney.

What basis do I have to claim this? The Santa Clara Court ordered intervention by outside legal counsel because the outside legal counsel was able to demonstrate inadequate representation on behalf of the City Attorney under state CCP 338. I cannot trust the City Government of Mountain View NOR the City Attorney because they have been found deficient enough to have the Santa Clara court allow intervention in the case by new attorneys. The Intervention was based on:

Cite as: Cal. Civ. Proc. Code §387.

(b)If any provision of law confers an unconditional right to intervene or if the person seeking intervention claims an interest relating to the property to transaction which is the subject of the action AND THAT PERSON IS SO SITUATED THAT THE DISPOSITION OF THE ACTION MAY AS A PRACTICAL MATTER IMPAIR OR IMPEDE THAT PERSON’S ABILITY TO PROTECT THAT INTEREST, UNLESS THAT PERSON’S INTEREST IS ADEQUATELY REPRESENTED BY EXISTING PARTIES, THE COURT SHALL, UPON TIMELY APPLICATION, PERMIT THAT PERSON TO INTERVENE.( Web Link)

Thus the “opinion” of the city attorney is suspect. The fact was the City Attorney was not interested in defending the CSFRA from the beginning and has done so against her particular political interests in my opinion.

The simple truth is without the intervention, the City Attorney would have been able to continue to argue the case INADEQUATELY. It appears the City is still trying to gut their own City Charter.

Thus even though enforcement of the law was suspended as status quo, it did not in fact eliminate the compulsory requirement under section 1720 that the Charter be codified 10 days after the certification of the election results by the city council as stated here:

SECTION 1720. MAJORITY APPROVAL, EFFECTIVE DATE, EXECUTION.

This Amendment to the City Charter shall be effective only if approved by a majority of the voters voting thereon and shall go into effect ten (10) days after the vote is declared by the City Council. The Mayor and City Clerk are hereby authorized to execute this Article to give evidence of its adoption by the voters.

The fact is that on December 13th, the Certified Santa Clara Registrar of Voters results were adopted by the City Council, thus Section 1720 simply states that the measure is enforceable on December 23rd, 2016.

Even though the City Attorney stipulated to the TRO, the section 1719 of the CFSRA prevents the city from altering the CSFRA enforcement date in any way, this section states:

SECTION 1719. CODIFICATION

The City Clerk and the City Attorney shall take all steps necessary to ensure the proper and efficient codification of this Article into the Charter of the City of Mountain View. This authority shall include making any necessary revisions to numbering, revising or substituting any references herein to other provisions of Mountain View or State law, and similar non-substantive items. In exercising this authority, the City Clerk and City Attorney shall not alter the substantive provisions of this Article nor take any action that contradicts express terms and purpose of this Article.

In the context that this was a Charter Amendment, the use of the term “shall” in fact make the Charter Amendment actions mandatory or compulsory in nature. The City Government cannot construe that the Charter Amendment is merely advisory or guidance. Thus the City Government for as long as the CSFRA is not “Restrained” must be compliance with the terms specified. Remember a TRO is in fact what it states, it is “Temporary” and simply “Restrains” laws, and it does not alter any laws.

For some reason the City Government has taken the liberty of adjudicating or revising the language of the CSFRA. The City Government is not allowed to do so. This is because the City Charter is the equivalent of the U.S. or California Constitution with regards with the City of Mountain View. Even the City Council must simply apply the CSFRA in its entirety as long as no court has determined that the entire or part of the CSFRA has been declared unconstitutional. The only way the City can act contrary to the CSFRA is upon the declaration or its unconstitutionality OR a new measure is voted in to repeal it.

So now that the TRO is now lifted, the entire CSFRA is in full effect. IF the City Attorney complains that now it will be subject to legal action from landlords because of its severe mistake in assuming it had absolute authority and discretion regarding how the CSFRA works, you must instruct the City Attorney that this is not correct. Given that the City Attorney has been in fact determined by the Santa Clara Court that it does not seem the City Attorney understands or adequately represents the citizens’ rights under CSFRA.

I respectfully demand that the CSFRA be retroactively entered into the City Charter and enforcement of the rent rollback provision be required by the City Government as of December 23rd, 2016. Failure to do so would constitute an equal enforcement of law violation with regard to both the California and the U.S. Constitution.

In the next city council meeting, a motion must be made to order compliance with the CSFRA as written and with the established timeline. Lack of such action will be construed as an intentional violation of the CSFRA by the City Council.

This would seem to be mandatory at this time given the inability of the City Government to get its house in order.

If the City Attorney and City Employees refuses to follow your instructions, you can ask for their resignation.





Posted by Nice Try
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 8, 2017 at 12:52 pm

The charter amendment and implementation thereof has no time limit, if the city leaders and staff made the professional judgement to use the TRO stipulation as a means to buy time to select a committee and setup a framework to implement the poorly worded measure V, they are well within their rights and have done nothing wrong.

The combo of the poorly written measure V and the City's good faith, workman like approach will not change the effective date of 4/5/17, it is a done deal, sorry to burst your bubble.


Posted by The Business Man
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 8, 2017 at 2:11 pm

The Business Man is a registered user.

Nice Try:

You Stated:

The charter amendment and implementation thereof has no time limit,

You know that is factually false please refer to

SECTION 1720. MAJORITY APPROVAL, EFFECTIVE DATE, EXECUTION.

This Amendment to the City Charter shall be effective only if approved by a majority of the voters voting thereon and shall go into effect ten (10) days after the vote is declared by the City Council. The Mayor and City Clerk are hereby authorized to execute this Article to give evidence of its adoption by the voters.

You said:

"if the city leaders and staff made the professional judgement..."

Since the last meeting was on April 4, 2017 before the court decision posted April 5, 2017 of removal of the TRO, the City Leaders simply have not weighed in at all. I have seen no reports quoting any of the City Council regarding the matter. The staff in this case has simply completely disregarding the CSFRA as a whole without proper justification, nor a court order to enable it.

You said:

"to use the TRO stipulation as a means to buy time to select a committee and setup a framework to implement the poorly worded measure V, they are well within their rights and have done nothing wrong.

The combo of the poorly written measure V and the City's good faith, workman like approach will not change the effective date of 4/5/17, it is a done deal, sorry to burst your bubble."

It is well within your rights to have an opinion that Measure V is poorly written, however, the written text is now in effect as is, it cannot be modified by the City Council, the City Attorney, nor the City Housing Authority.

However, once it comes to the City Council, given that the restraining order is now lifted, the City Council is just about required to implement the CSFRA without exception and without delay, and cannot delay rent roll-back. They are bound to act in a compulsory manner because their conduct is dictated by the City Charter, which is now not restrained in any way, nor has it been rewritten.

So partially you are correct, the City Council has not weighed in regarding the situation, but they can dictate the actions of the City Staff. What I am going to do is use the City Charter as it was intended to direct the actions of the City Council, who are required to comply with it. It simply is just a matter of time at this point. Soon, the City will be instructed to retroactively enforce the rent roll back from December 23rd, 2016 up to today.

If the staff does not comply, it will be misconduct, warranting disciplinary actions.


Posted by Humble observer
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 8, 2017 at 3:04 pm

Here we go, more multi-page rambling screeds ("The Business Man"), which no one reads therefore -- and their author never, ever, seems to "get" why that behavior is self-defeating, no matter how obvious it is to most readers.

Over the years, resident eccentrics with time on their hands come and go from this forum (as from City-Council hearings, and any other platform where they perceive a possible audience and are tolerated). They continue until they tire of it (or their health fails, or they move to Reno, or whatever). If this forum instituted a user registration requirement (as so many others like it do), then its operators could have a gentle word with these people, who might then listen. Might.


Posted by The Business Man
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 8, 2017 at 4:07 pm

The Business Man is a registered user.

Humble Observer,

I cannot disagree with you, I am VERY guilty regarding the length of my posts. However, it is because there is so much to document to substantiate my opinion. If I did not do this, persons like yourself would simply claim my opinions are incorrect, or worse. I do not claim to be perfect, but I explain my position as best I can. However, my discussion submissions are constructive in nature.

And by the way, I am a registered user, I have been for months.

I will be sending my letter to the City Concil on Monday as well as submitting emails to the city council members. My approach is the same as was done when the City Council instructed the City Attorney to defend the CSFRA from the pre;iminary injunction. It appears that she will do as she wishes unless SPECIFICALLY INSTRUCTED by the City Council.

I consider that kind of behavior poor judgement, but unless it is cleared up with her, she is in a position to fly unguided.


Posted by SAMA
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Apr 8, 2017 at 8:56 pm

SAMA is a registered user.

The Business Man,

Since you are planning to contact the city, perhaps, you could be so kind to also contact Tenant-Inteveners. According to Gary, they are best positioned to move the court to clarify the controversy regarding effective date of Measure V.

Juliet Brodie, Thomas Zito and Nadia Aziz are attorneys for Tenant-Inteveners. Their contact information could be obtained through case# 16CV304253 on Santa Clara Superior Court Case Information Portal:
Web Link

and, possibly, at:
Web Link







Posted by TRO
a resident of Slater
on Apr 8, 2017 at 9:10 pm

The TRO expired, it was not invalidated or reversed, it was in effect then expired.

Therefore, you are wasting your time attempting to obtain any rent rollback prior to 4/5/17. The interveners know this and so does the tenants coalition, neither of whom are suggesting any rollback prior to 4/5/17.

Focus on the future instead by succeeding at life so you don't need to depend on mandates like rent control. Sad!


Posted by timetrip
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 9, 2017 at 4:29 am

When I was in 8th grade I submitted an essay of which I was very proud. Upon its return, the English teacher had written at the top in bold red ink: "Learn to be concise."


Posted by The Business Man
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 9, 2017 at 12:55 pm

The Business Man is a registered user.

TRO

“The TRO expired, it was not invalidated or reversed, it was in effect then expired.

Therefore, you are wasting your time attempting to obtain any rent rollback prior to 4/5/17. The interveners know this and so does the tenants coalition, neither of whom are suggesting any rollback prior to 4/5/17.

Focus on the future instead by succeeding at life so you don't need to depend on mandates like rent control. Sad!”

I keep asking the same questions and no one has answered it. Please find the California Statute that says that a TRO overwrites a Charter Amendment that it is “Temporarily Restraining? Please find a California Case law that the court explicitly states that when a TRO expires, it’s temporary effect is permanent? Please find a statute that states a City Attorney can neglect their duty regarding codification of the CSFRA Charter? Please find me a statute that enables a City Attorney to grant legal protections that in fact do not exist, and was proven to be invalid?

The California Statutes work like this, you are granted a TRO until you can establish a case for the issuance of a preliminary injunction. But since this is done without full judicial review as an “emergency” status quo act. It simply does not grant permanent restriction of enforcement of a City Charter unless the preliminary injunction is ordered after a complete judicial review.

However in this case the court determined that even the legal basis for a Preliminary Injunction. If one reads the statute regarding TRO, virtually the same standards of evidence and proof are required. So one can observe that the only way the TRO was going to be issued is that the City Attorney was cooperating with the plaintiff.

Cooperating in such a way that it eventually was determined by the court that it could not go on unsupervised. The court basically gave the intervenors the right to direct the City Attorney to apply the proper legal standards in the case. The CAA and the City Attorney simply assumes that the TRO once expires still controls enforcement of the City Charter unilaterally. The simple truth is that it does not. At least it does not until the questions above are answered.

CITIZENS OF MOUNTAIN VIEW NOW IT IS TIME TO ACT TO COMPLETE THE MARATHON.


Posted by The Business Man
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 9, 2017 at 12:58 pm

The Business Man is a registered user.

Sorry the last post was incomplete:

TRO

“The TRO expired, it was not invalidated or reversed, it was in effect then expired.

Therefore, you are wasting your time attempting to obtain any rent rollback prior to 4/5/17. The interveners know this and so does the tenants coalition, neither of whom are suggesting any rollback prior to 4/5/17.

Focus on the future instead by succeeding at life so you don't need to depend on mandates like rent control. Sad!”

I keep asking the same questions and no one has answered it. Please find the California Statute that says that a TRO overwrites a Charter Amendment that it is “Temporarily Restraining? Please find a California Case law that the court explicitly states that when a TRO expires, it’s temporary effect is permanent? Please find a statute that states a City Attorney can neglect their duty regarding codification of the CSFRA Charter? Please find me a statute that enables a City Attorney to grant legal protections that in fact do not exist, and was proven to be invalid?

The California Statutes work like this, you are granted a TRO until you can establish a case for the issuance of a preliminary injunction. But since this is done without full judicial review as an “emergency” status quo act. It simply does not grant permanent restriction of enforcement of a City Charter unless the preliminary injunction is ordered after a complete judicial review.

However in this case the court determined that even the legal basis for a Preliminary Injunction. If one reads the statute regarding TRO, virtually the same standards of evidence and proof are required. So one can observe that the only way the TRO was going to be issued is that the City Attorney was cooperating with the plaintiff. Cooperating in such a way that it eventually was determined by the court that it could not go on unsupervised. The court basically gave the intervenors the right to direct the City Attorney to apply the proper legal standards in the case. The CAA and the City Attorney simply assumes that the TRO once expires still controls enforcement of the City Charter unilaterally. The simple truth is that it does not. At least it does not until the questions above are answered.

The City Attorney only assumes the TRO modified the CSFRA, when in fact it does not. The City Attorney has been certified as negligent in its work by the Santa Clara court when it ordered the intervention by the legal teams that joined the case. The City Attorney has a mandatory duty issued by the CSFRA that it refuses to do. The fact was the TRO only suspended the rent rollback, NOT THE ENTIRE CSFRA.

THE WORK OF THE MOUNTAIN VIEW CITIZEN IS NOT COMPLETE UNTIL THE CITIZENS ENFORCE THEIR LEGAL RIGHTS GRANTED NOW IN THE CITY CHARTER. THE CITIZENS MUST WRITE LETTERS AND EMAILS TO THE CITY COUNCIL DIRECTING THEM TO INSTRUCT THE CITY ATTORNEY TO ENFORCE THE RENT ROLLBACK STARTING ON DECEMBER 23. THE CITY COUNCIL SHOULD DO THIS ON THEIR OWN AS WELL GIVEN THE CITY CHARTER NOW REQUIRES THEM TO DO SO. THE CITIZENS HAVE RUN 26 MILES, BUT WE HAVE NOT CROSSED THE FINISH LINE OF THIS MARATHON.


Posted by The Business Man
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 10, 2017 at 9:16 am

The Business Man is a registered user.

Dear Recipient Name,

The City Council (CC) must instruct the City Attorney (CA) and City Government (CG) to immediately enforce the Community Stabilization and Fair Rent Act, (CSFRA) on the date it was specified to do on December 23rd, 2016, and the (CA) must be instructed to order the rents overpaid since then to be refunded or credited to the tenants immediately. Why?

The (CG) must comply with the entire (CSFRA) because the Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) is gone. Since the Santa Clara County Superior Court (SCCSC) had the Preliminary Injunction Hearing, under CCP 527, the TRO simply does not exist anymore because once the preliminary injunction hearing took place, the TRO died. The (SCCSC) never struck down any part of the (CSFRA).

The TRO was intended to establish status quo, it was only applicable to the rent rollback and the rental rate increases and was only temporary until the full hearing that took place on April 4th. The (CA) knew this but did not in fact follow the (CSFRA) Section 1720 and Section 1719 requiring codification of the Charter Amendment 10 days after December 13th, 2016. And further once the TRO expired it simply has no force of law anymore.

The (CA) has also violated (CSFRA) section 1719 by altering the date of enforcement. This was expressed when the (CA) declared that the (CSFRA) is applicable after April 5th, 2017. The (CA) is specifically prohibited from doing this due to Section 1719 of the (CSFRA). The (SCCSC) has not stated that Section 1720 was unconstitutional or restrained, only the rent rollback and rent control was in the TRO stipulation. I have been forced to do this because the (CG) is materially in violation of the Charter Amendment at this time. How? First the (CG) has no authority to alter the fact that the TRO does not rewrite the Charter Amendment and second the Charter Amendment is still currently constitutional in its entirety.

The (CG) has taken actions without a legal basis to revise the date of enforcement and to attempt to rewrite the mandated actions made in the (CSFRA). Specifically, the (CG) was fully aware that the (CC) did certify the election results on December 13th, 2016. Section 1720 made it a requirement, nonetheless the TRO that the Charter Amendment be entered and codified.

That is because a TRO only suspended the rent rollback and rent controls of the (CSFRA) due to the negligent acts of the (CA). If in fact the (CA) acted to agree to not act on Section 1720, this would be a violation of Section 1719 of the (CSFRA).

What basis do I have to claim this? The (SCCSC) ordered intervention by outside legal counsel because the outside legal counsel was able to demonstrate inadequate representation on behalf of the (CA) under state CCP 338. I cannot trust the (CG) OR the (CA) because they have been found deficient enough to have the (SCCSC) allow intervention in the case by new attorneys. The Intervention was based on:

“Cite as: Cal. Civ. Proc. Code §387.

(b)If any provision of law confers an unconditional right to intervene or if the person seeking intervention claims an interest relating to the property to transaction which is the subject of the action AND THAT PERSON IS SO SITUATED THAT THE DISPOSITION OF THE ACTION MAY AS A PRACTICAL MATTER IMPAIR OR IMPEDE THAT PERSON’S ABILITY TO PROTECT THAT INTEREST, UNLESS THAT PERSON’S INTEREST IS ADEQUATELY REPRESENTED BY EXISTING PARTIES, THE COURT SHALL, UPON TIMELY APPLICATION, PERMIT THAT PERSON TO INTERVENE.”

Thus the “opinion” of the (CA) is suspect. The fact is the (CA) was not interested in defending the (CSFRA) from the beginning and has done so against her particular political interests, in my opinion.

The simple truth is without the intervention, the (CA) would have been able to continue to argue the case INADEQUATELY. It appears the (CA) and (CG) is still trying to gut their own City Charter.

Thus even though enforcement of the law was suspended as status quo, it did not in fact eliminate the compulsory requirement under section 1720 that the Charter be codified 10 days after the certification of the election results by the (CC) as stated here:

“SECTION 1720. MAJORITY APPROVAL, EFFECTIVE DATE, EXECUTION.

This Amendment to the City Charter shall be effective only if approved by a majority of the voters voting thereon and shall go into effect ten (10) days after the vote is declared by the City Council. The Mayor and City Clerk are hereby authorized to execute this Article to give evidence of its adoption by the voters.”

The fact is that on December 13th, the Certified Santa Clara Registrar of Voters results were adopted by the (CC), thus Section 1720 simply states that the measure is enforceable on December 23rd, 2016.

Even though the (CA) stipulated to the TRO, the Section 1719 of the CFSRA prevents the (CA) from altering the (CSFRA) enforcement date in any way, this section states:”

SECTION 1719. CODIFICATION

The City Clerk and the City Attorney shall take all steps necessary to ensure the proper and efficient codification of this Article into the Charter of the City of Mountain View. This authority shall include making any necessary revisions to numbering, revising or substituting any references herein to other provisions of Mountain View or State law, and similar non-substantive items. In exercising this authority, the City Clerk and City Attorney shall not alter the substantive provisions of this Article nor take any action that contradicts express terms and purpose of this Article.”

In the context that this was a Charter Amendment, the use of the term “shall” in fact makes the Charter Amendment actions mandatory or compulsory in nature. The (CA) or (CG) cannot construe that the Charter Amendment is merely advisory or guidance. Thus the (CA) and (CG) for as long as the (CSFRA) is not “Restrained” must be in compliance with the terms specified. Remember a TRO is in fact what it states, it is “Temporary” and simply “Restrains” laws, and it does not alter any laws. It also does not rewrite the date of the (CSFRA) execution.

For some reason the (CA) and (CG) has taken the liberty of adjudicating or revising the language of the (CSFRA). Proof of this is that the City of Mountain View website claims that the (CSFRA) is only applicable to tenants after April 5th, 2017. The (CA) and (CG) is not allowed to do so, specifically because of Section 1719 of the (CSFRA).

This is because the City Charter is the equivalent of the U.S. or California Constitution with regards to the actions of the entire City of Mountain View Government. Even the (CC) must simply apply the (CSFRA) in its entirety as long as no court has determined that the entire or part of the (CSFRA) has been declared unconstitutional. The only way the City can act contrary to the (CSFRA) is upon the declaration of its unconstitutionality OR a new measure is voted in to repeal it.

So now that the TRO is lifted or expired, the entire (CSFRA) is in full effect. IF the (CA) complains that now the (CA) will be subject to legal action from landlords; because of the (CA)’s severe mistake in assuming it had absolute authority and discretion regarding how the (CSFRA) works; you must instruct the (CA) that this is not correct. Given that the (CA) has been in fact determined by the (SCCSC) that the (CA) does NOT understand or adequately represents the citizens’ rights under (CSFRA).

I respectfully demand the (CSFRA) be retroactively entered into the City Charter and enforcement of the rent rollback provision be required by the (CA) and (CG) as of December 23rd, 2016. Failure to do so would constitute an equal enforcement of law violation with regard to both the California and the U.S. Constitution.

At the next (CC) meeting on April 18th a motion must be made to order compliance with the (CSFRA) as written and rent rollback orders issued for the rents paid from December 23rd up to today. By not doing so would simply be a violation of the City Charter by the (CC), it could result in discipline based on the Brown act. This is mandatory at this time given the fact that without specific instructions and supervision, the (CG) is in Violation of the City Charter at this time.


Posted by The Business Man
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 10, 2017 at 4:06 pm

The Business Man is a registered user.

My neighbor did some more research. The City of Mountain View recently appraised the property I live in at at about the same amount as Zillow did, approximately $1.15 Million. Unfortunately for my new apartment owner, there appears to be no solution for them.

I just found out that typically it can take 20 years to break even in a typical market. In San Jose it is more than 3 years, here is the info:

"Among the 30 largest metro areas analyzed by Zillow in the first quarter, those with the shortest break-even horizon were Miami (two years), Detroit (two years) and Phoenix (2.1 years)," Zillow reports. "Large metros with the longest break-even horizon in the first quarter included New York (5.2 years), Boston (4.1 years) and San Jose (3.7 years)."

Here is the website I found (Web Link

It would seem this will demonstrate that any apartment investor cannot expect to make a profit for at least 3 years when buying an apartment. If any investor expects to break even instantly, that’s just not realistic. If this is also what could be called a fair rate of return? Then it should be well known that it is simply impossible to make a profit on a new apartment purchase for at least 4 years, and this should be a factor in the rent adjustments that the board will consider.




Posted by the_punnisher
a resident of North Whisman
on Apr 10, 2017 at 9:15 pm

the_punnisher is a registered user.

One thing about courts and courtrooms is that reality stops when you enter a courtroom. The presiding judge IS God in that courtroom. A judge CAN enforce the law; sometimes they don't and get forced to retire.
However, a judges interpretation of a law IS FINAL IN THAT COURTROOM. Unless YOU want to pay and hope a upper level court will allow an appeal.
If any Attorney tries to modify a judge's decision, they had better be fully prepared with legal rulings in their favor. If any misrepresentation is false or does not contain the FULL decision, if they are lucky, a judge will invite said lawyer into his/her chamber and proceed to hand their butt back to them. If not lucky, that chewing out is done publicly. The attorney should consider another line of business...
The fact that attorneys were changed means what has already been said; these MV legal people DID NOT UPHOLD THE LAW AND NEW ATTORNEYS HAD TO REPLACE THE LAWBREAKERS.
How do I know these things? My wife was Clerk of Courts in Clark County ( Las Vegas ) and the Chief Clerk of Courts in the City-County Building in Denver, CO. The above things have actually happened in and around the City-County Building. I've been to the " social parties " and have met the " movers and shakers " representing City and State Laws for Denver and Colorado. You keep your mouth shut and your ears & eyes open and you learn a lot of things....


Posted by the_punnisher
a resident of North Whisman
on Apr 10, 2017 at 9:19 pm

the_punnisher is a registered user.

Oh, BTW, We were legally married by one of her favorite judges. RHIP...


Posted by The Business Man
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 13, 2017 at 2:44 pm

The Business Man is a registered user.

Mark Novack Sent me an Email based on my Questions regarding CSFRA and he stated:

“I spoke with the city attorney yesterday and she indicated the city isn't taking a stance on whether tenants are owed compensation for the lawsuit delay.”

However doesn’t the city charter state that the City Council is compelled to comply with the City Charter? It seems the City Council is trying to duck their obligations in this situation The Section 506 of the City Charter requires compliance with the City Charter because it is specifically restricted from non-compliance The City Charter states:

“Section 506. - Powers vested in the council.

All powers of the city, except as otherwise provided in this Charter, shall be vested in the council, and said council may establish the method by which any of such powers may be exercised.”

So the City must act in compliance with the Charter. Since when does the City Council have discretion whether to comply with the City Charter? This position is simply wrong and without any justification on the part of the City Council or the City Attorney.

She also said:

“She made it clear that there could be an argument made that tenants deserve some compensation, but she said that question will be sorted out either through independent lawsuits or perhaps by the rental housing committee. “

So did she in fact state that the delays caused by the City Attorney warrants tenants the right to get a retroactive refund? If there is doubt in her position that a refund is possibly justified, why is she not publically stating so? Is it because she is simply opposed to enforcement of the City Charter? Why does she make claims in public disclosures that are incomplete? She claims the rent control is only in effect after April 5, but she just told you that it CAN be expected to be enforceable since December 23rd. Which is it, she cannot have it both ways? If you look at the presentation at this location (Web Link

Granted it was before the TRO, but the TRO is now lifted, so this presentation is restored as accurate. Please look at slide 9 and 10. The simple fact is the City has to take responsibility for the delay. Does it want to pay the tenants or does it want the landlords to do so?

There must be a public announcement by the City that the tenants have the legal right to seek retroactive refunds from December 23rd to today at this time.


Posted by SAMA
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Apr 13, 2017 at 9:08 pm

SAMA is a registered user.

The Business Man, thank you for the update. Wondering if you had a chance to contact the Tenant-Inteveners, or rather, their attorneys. Any outcome? Thanks.


Posted by The Business Man
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 14, 2017 at 11:28 am

The Business Man is a registered user.

Another Update,

The new law includes eviction protections and rent control. Rents roll back to their October 19, 2015 levels in many cases. The law applies to apartments in buildings of three units or more built before Feb. 1, 1995.

On May 1 (or whenever your next rent payment is due), Mountain View tenants who live in covered units should pay what they were paying for that unit in October 2015. That will be your rent going forward until there is a lawful increase under the new law. If you have received an increase since moving in after Oct. 15, 2015, your lawful rent is that initial amount you paid when moving in.
Click HERE to download a letter you can send along with your May rent to explain the amount to your landlord.

You may be entitled to a refund for rent you paid for April 2017 or even for rent you paid in January through March of 2017. Whether you are entitled to a refund and, if so, for how far back, is an unresolved legal question. The safest thing to do is to pay your “rolled back” rent (the October 2015 amount) for a few months and wait for developments on this legal question.

In a few months, once the Rental Housing Committee is up and running, tenants can file a petition and ask for a refund through that process. Legal resources will be available to advise tenants and help them with this process, and understand their maximum rights!

Going forward, the Rental Housing Committee should announce the first lawful rent increase (“annual general adjustment) by June 30, 2017, which will take effect no earlier than September 1, 2017.(Web Link

So I am going to the next City Council meeting. I will express my disappointment regarding the City's desire to violate the City Charter. My question is if the City Council does not want to comply, why do they not just resign because violation of the City Charter disqualifies them from holding office.


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