RENT STABILIZATION BOARD
Regular Meeting

Monday, April 2, 2012
7:00 p.m.

Maudelle Shirek Building
2134 Martin Luther King Jr. Way
Council Chambers, Second Floor
Broadcast Live – KPFB – 89.3
(N. Berkeley) and BTV Cable Channel 33

Video Archive
(3 hrs, 51 mins)

AGENDA 


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If you are unable to access this information online, please participate by contacting us via e-mail at rent@ci.berkeley.ca.us, telephone (510) 981-7368 (981-RENT), or TDD (510) 981-6903. 


1. Roll call – 7:00 p.m.

2. CLOSED SESSION:   CONFERENCE WITH LEGAL COUNSEL – Litigation Update

Update on litigation pursuant to Section 54956.9 of the Government Code:

10 Alameda Superior Court cases filed against various UC Berkeley fraternities for failure to pay Rent Board Registration Fees when renting to non-members

3. Approval of Agenda

4. Public Forum

5. Approval of the March 5, 2012 Regular Meeting Minutes

6. Appeal Time Certain – 7:45 p.m. 

Appeal T-5025 and L-3969 (3030 College Ave.)  (Second Compliance Decision on Reconsideration)

Landlord appeals the hearing examiner’s Second Compliance Decision on Reconsideration.  The second compliance decision was before the hearing examiner, because the landlord represented through an e-mail and subsequent written evidence that he had complied with the Rent Board’s order to reimburse the tenant for prior rent overcharges.  The hearing examiner issued a Tentative Second Compliance Decision on Reconsideration based on this information without holding a hearing.  The hearing examiner thereafter granted a hearing because the tenant filed a timely objection claiming that he never received landlord’s letter or the refund the landlord owed him.  On appeal, landlord argues, among other issues, that: the Rent Board improperly ruled on the landlord’s capital improvement petition; the tenant has a history of “gaming” the system; the tenant perjured himself at the hearing on this matter; and it is the Rent Board’s responsibility to issue a notice of compliance to the tenant and issue rent ceiling increase notices to both landlord and tenant.  A review of the record, however, establishes that the landlord was aware that the tenant would not receive the letter and checks for reimbursement in the manner in which he sent them; the landlord ignored a clear directive in the hearing examiner’s October 27, 2010 decision on this matter ordering that the landlord serve all future communications required to be served on the tenant related to these petitions, to both the tenant and to his attorney either in person or by regular U.S. mail, with first-class postage fully paid.  Moreover, landlord waited over 11 months after he sent in notice of alleged compliance with the hearing examiner’s order to refund rent overcharges to inquire as to why the hearing examiner had not issued a compliance decision on this matter.  A review of the evidence and testimony reveals that the hearing examiner correctly determined that the initial compliance decision should have been reconsidered and that the landlord had not complied with previous orders to refund rent overcharges until he paid the tenant at the hearing on this matter.  For this reason, legal staff recommends that the Board affirm the hearing examiner’s decision.

7. Special Presentation by Rent Board Legislative Advocate Christine Minnehan regarding pending housing legislation

8.  Action Items

a. From Board Members, Executive Director and Committees

(1)  Recommendation to endorse AB 1679 (Bonilla) which would allow landlords and tenants to agree that a landlord may e-mail to the tenant the required statement of any deductions to a security deposit after a tenant vacates, along with any receipts for work done; and instruct our Legislative Advocate to assist in the passage of this bill (Executive Director)

(2)  Recommendation to endorse SB 1229 (Pavley) which would prohibit landlords from requiring de-clawing or de-voicing (e.g., surgery that prevents a dog from barking) and stipulate that this could not be required as a condition to rent a unit or remain in a dwelling unit; and instruct our Legislative Advocate to assist in the passage of this bill  (Executive Director) 

(3)  Discussion and possible action regarding selecting a date for a Special Meeting of the Rent Stabilization Board in late April or May 2012  (Executive Director and Budget & Personnel Committee) – TO BE DELIVERED

(4)  Discussion and possible action regarding proposed revisions to the registration requirements for fraternities (Executive Director and Budget & Personnel Committee)

(5)  First reading of proposed Regulation 1282 – Individual Rent Adjustments for Units in Properties With No Vacancy Increases Since December 31, 1998 (IRA/AGA/Habitability Committee & Executive Director)

(6)  Proposal to approve staff recommendation on the following requests for waiver of late registration penalties  (Executive Director)

Ministerial Waivers

Waiver No.      Property Address
4077                  2928 California Street
4086                  1917 Curtis Street 
4094                  1625 Prince Street
4111                  1427 Milvia Street
4118                  1123 and 1125 Hearst Avenue
4119                  1930 Blake Street
4120                  2704 Mabel Street
4122                  2151 Oregon Street
4124                  2023 Parker Street
4126                  2406 Blake Street
4127                  1112-1114 Channing Way

Discretionary Waivers 

Waiver No.      Property Address
4079                 2414 Dana Street
4098                 1109 Parker Street
4104                 1180 University Avenue
4112                 1635 Francisco Street
4113                 1536 Carleton Street
4115                 1411 Cypress Street
4116                 2606 Fulton Street

 9.   Information and Announcements

Please Note:  The Board may move Information Items to the Action Calendar.

a. Reports from Board Members/Staff

(1) Update on efforts to assist tenants affected by the November 18, 2011 fire at 2435 Haste Street and 2441 Haste Street (Executive Director) – Verbal

(2) Update on efforts to assist tenants affected by the March 8, 2012 fire at 2227 Dwight Way  (Executive Director) – Verbal

(3) Published Commissioner Attendance Records for Regular Board Meetings and Committee Meetings for the period December 2011 through February 2012  (Executive Director) – TO BE DELIVERED

(4) Updated Rent Board Committee Assignments list  (Chair Stephens)

(5) Update on timeline for developing a Smoke-Free Housing Ordinance  (Executive Director)

(6) Update on Responsible Banking Policy and results of research on possible moving Rent Board account holdings to an alternate financial institution  (Executive Director) – Verbal

(7) Update on alternate location for City Council Meetings  (Executive Director)

(8) February 2012 U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development report titled, “U.S. Housing Market Conditions: 4th Quarter 2011”  (Executive Director)

(9) March 19, 2012 Bay Area edition of The New York Times article titled, “Many Arguments, No Agreements on Affordable Housing”  (Commissioner Tregub)

(10) March 2012 Rent Board Tenant Postcard  (Executive Director)

(11) Flyer announcing the March 20, 2012 Rent Stabilization Program’s “Eviction Workshop for Landlords”  (Executive Director)

(12) April 2, 2012 letter from Commissioner Harr regarding moving the Rent Board’s account holdings from Wells Fargo Bank to an alternate financial institution, and a December 5, 2011 BeyondChron.org article titled, “Occupy San Francisco Targets Wells Fargo”

(13) Press release announcing the “Elected Women – Past, Present and Future” event on April 18, 2012 at Berkeley City College  (Chair Stephens)

b.   Updates and Announcements regarding Committee/Board Meetings

(1) Budget and Personnel

a.  April 2nd agenda

(2) Outreach 

a.  March 16th agenda 

(3) IRA/AGA and Habitability

a.  September 27, 2011 minutes 

b.  March 8th agenda 

(4) Eviction/Section 8/Foreclosure

(5) Safe & Sustainable Housing

a.  April 4th agenda 

(6) Waiver Committee

a.  November 8, 2011 minutes 

(7) Ad Hoc Committee on Smoke-Free Housing

(8) 4 x 4 City Council/RSB Housing Committee

(9) Future Special Meetings

c. Discussion of items for possible placement on future agenda

10.   Adjournment 

COMMUNICATION ACCESS INFORMATION:

This meeting is being held in a wheelchair-accessible location.  To request disability-related accommodation(s) to participate in the meeting, including auxiliary aids or services, please contact Aimee Mueller at 981-4932 or 981-6903 (TDD) at least three business days before the meeting date.

Please refrain from wearing scented products to this meeting