RENT STABILIZATION BOARD
Regular Meeting Minutes

Monday, October 15, 2007
7 PM

Webcast Video Archive 

APPROVED

1. Roll Call - Chair Arreguin called the meeting to order at 7:12 PM. Pam Wyche called roll. 

Commissioners present: Blake, Chong, Harrison, Overman, Stephens, Walden, Webster, Arreguin

Commissioners absent: Kavanagh 

Staff Present: Kelekian, Siegel, Wyche

Visiting Department Staff: Cowan, Tran

2. Approval of Agenda M/S/C (Stephens/Webster) APPROVED. Voice vote. Passed: 8-0-0-1. Absent: Kavanagh.

3. Public Forum There were no speakers.

4. Comments from Chair and Boardmembers. Chair explained holdover from last meeting. No comments.

5. Approval of the September 17, 2007 Meeting minutes . M/S/C (Overman/Stephens) APPROVED AS WRITTEN. Voice vote. Passed: 8-0-0-1 Absent: Kavanagh.

6. Appeal Time Certain - 7:15 p.m. Appeal T-4849/RWN-1448, 2086 Allston Way, #307. (Appeal withdrawn.)

7. Action Items

7.a.(1) Possible changes to the Condominium Conversion Ordinance. [PDF file, requires Adobe Acrobat Reader] M/S/C (Overman/Harrison) MOVE RECOMMENDATION TO SEND A LETTER TO COUNCIL WITH THE NINE RECOMMENDED CHANGES TO THE CONDOMINIUM CONVERSION ORDINANCE AS DRAFTED. Friendly amendment by Chair Arreguin to attach the Board's previous policy recommendations to the letter for Council's additional consideration. Voice vote. Passed: 8-0-0-1 Absent: Kavanagh. 

7.a.(2) Adoption of the 2008 Annual General Adjustment (AGA) Order, Regulation 1130. [PDF file, requires Adobe Acrobat Reader] M/S/C (Chong/Overman) TO ADOPT THE 2008 AGA AT 2.2% AS REGULATION 1130. Voice vote. Passed: 8-0-0-1 Absent: Kavanagh.

7.a.(3) Proposal to adopt a resolution to recommend that the City Council increase Ellis relocation benefits provided under BMC Chapter 13.77 [PDF file, requires Adobe Acrobat Reader] M/S/C (Overman/Blake) TO RECOMMEND THE INCREASE AS WRITTEN BY THE EVICTION/SECTION 8 COMMITTEE WITH AN ADDITIONAL LAST PARAGRAPH, THE SAME AS THE LAST PARAGRAPH IN THE STAFF REPORT TO THE EVICTION COMMITTEE WITH THE WORD ALSO ADDED, TO READ AS FOLLOWS, "Finally, to avoid a rush of preemptive Ellis Act fillings, any amendment to the Ellis Act Implementation Ordinance (B.M.C. Chapter 13.77) increasing the amount of the relocation fee should specifically state that all tenants in possession of their rental unit at the time the ordinance is amended are also entitled to the higher fee." Voice vote. Passed: 8-0-0-1. Absent: Kavanagh.

7.a.(4) Proposal to approve staff recommendation on the following requests for waiver of late registration penalties. (Executive Director)

Ministerial Waivers

Waiver No.      Property Address
3486                 3042 Wheeler Street 
3487                 2720 California Street 
3488                 1818 Alcatraz Avenue

Discretionary Waivers

Waiver No.      Property Address
3504                 2223-2225 8th Street

M/S/C (Stephens/Overman) TO ACCEPT STAFF RECOMMENDATIONS ON ALL WAIVERS LISTED. Voice vote. Passed: 8-0-0-1 Absent: Kavanagh.

8.a. Information and Announcements

8.a.(1) October 1, 2007 letter to Board Chair Arreguin from Commissioner Kavanagh [PDF file, requires Adobe Acrobat Reader] Chair Arreguin explained that the letter addressed to him attached to the agenda is from Commissioner Kavanagh and specifically requests that he be allowed to take a leave of absence from the Board, from October 2nd to December 31st, and that his stipend be placed in escrow.

8.a.(2) Press release regarding Commissioner Kavanagh. Chair Arreguin explained that the attached press release from the Executive Director contained comments from the Chair with respect to Commissioner Kavanagh's leave of absence.

8.a.(3) Memorandum from the City Manager announcing appointment of a new Deputy City Manager, Christine Daniel. Executive Director announced the appointment of Christine Daniel as the new Deputy City Manager.

8.a.(4) Update on new phone system. Executive Director said that there has been a slight set back caused by the misplacement of the conduit by the contractor, which is being corrected at no charge, and said that he hopes to announce the system is up and running by the November meeting.

8.a.(5) Staff and Board participation at How Berkeley Can You Be on September 30. Executive Director thanked the two staff members for their good work answering questions at the Rent Board booth. Various Boardmembers also thanked the staff and the Commissioners who participated in the parade, particularly Commissioner Blake who instigated and arranged the creation of the parade house float.

8.a.(6) Update on Jarvis bill. Executive Director explained that the bill is progressing with signatures being collected in favor of as well as for an alternative measure for voters to consider on the June ballot. He hopes to have more information at the next meeting.

8.a.(7) Berkeley Housing Authority updated Administrative Plan. Executive Director said that a an updated version is available at the Rent Board Public Information Unit for staff and public viewing and a Housing Department link is on the Rent Board website. For more information or to request a hard copy, the public should contact the Berkeley Housing Authority.

8.a.(8) Recent article on lack of affordable housing. Commissioner Overman offered this article in response to a Boardmember request at the September meeting.

8.b. Announcements of upcoming Committee/Board Meetings 

(1) Budget and Personnel - Chair Overman said that the committee would meet as soon the letter goes to the unions regarding possible staff participation in the Executive Director evaluation process. 

(2) Outreach - Commissioner Overman requested an alternate be assigned to the committee in Kavanagh's absence. Chair Arreguin asked that interested Boardmembers contact him. As soon as an alternate is assigned, a meeting will be scheduled off line.

(3) IRA/AGA/Habitability - Next meeting Monday, October 22 at 4 p.m. Security deposit issue brought up by BPOA will be discussed further. 

(4) Eviction/Section 8 - Chair Arreguin announced that he appointed himself as an alternate to make sure the committee has a quorum in Kavanagh's absence. Meeting to be scheduled off line. 

(5) Ad Hoc Committee on Condominium Conversion Ordinance - No meeting scheduled. 

(6) 4x4 City Council/RSB Housing Committee - No meeting scheduled. 

(7) Ad Hoc Committee of Soft Story - Chair requested that a meeting by scheduled soon. 

(8) Future Special Meetings - None scheduled at this time.

8.c. Discussion of items for possible placement on future agenda. Jarvis Bill update.

9. Adjournment M/S/C (Harrison/Stephens) Chair Arreguin adjourned at 8:17 PM.