Lane County Judge Strikes Down Cap on Application Fees
Dear First Name,
Lane County Judge strikes down cap on application fees
We have some updates on the recent court ruling on Eugene's limit on application screening fees. As you may know, a Lane County Circuit Court Judge ruled that the $10 cap is preempted by state law. This was an incredibly nuanced decision, and it could easily be overturned by the court of appeals. My understanding is the city intends to appeal the decision. Read the article by Megan Banta here.
However, the city plans to appeal the decision, and this issue is not over yet. Despite this setback, the $10 cap remains a widely popular measure, as it helps reduce barriers for low-income individuals in finding new housing. This measure was especially impactful for those with section 8 vouchers and those whose only source of income is social security disability.
In response to the popularity of the $10 cap concept, state legislators have introduced three bills related to screening fees, with the help of Eugene Tenant Alliance in writing one of them - SB684. Our hope is that one of these bills will pass and provide this consumer protection to all Oregonians.
We will continue to keep you updated on this important issue. But for now, keep the faith. Be like princess Leia.
Capping the Rent in Oregon - SB611
We’ve gotten word that the bill to cap rents in Oregon is coming up for a hearing sometime in the next two weeks. We are organizing a coordinating meeting (TOMORROW) Saturday at 11am to plan. If you want a calendar invite, drop us a line at email@example.com
We will needs folks to do some of the following:
- Drive for carpools to salem to pack the hearing room
- Sign up to testify in person or via microsoft teams
- Submit written testimony, and ask others to do the same
- submit letters to the editor in The Oregonian, Portland Tribune, Eugene Weekly, and Willamette Week, and others
- call through our list of renters that signed our petition and activate them
- Emailing your legislators, committee chairs/vice chairs and legislators in leadership
We will be taking our lead from the Oregon Stable Homes Coalition, which has taken point on writing testimony guides for this bill, the eviction reform bill, and the renter data bill.
SB 611 has a broad community coalition behind it, including heavy hitters in organized labor, planned parenthood, environmental groups, the aclu, social justice organizations and many more.
While it's great to have those groups support our cause, it's now or never to get renters out and directly involved in this process. In a way, renters need to win this for ourselves - and we have the cover from the heavy hitters to do so. If you can step up the next two weeks, please do so. We've been organizing for some time and we are closer than ever to winning a real cap on rent.
Hope to see you this Saturday, Feb 4 at 11am to plan.
SB 799 - The Eviction Reform Bill This past monday, the Senate Housing and Development Committee held a hearing on Senate Bill 799, which proposes to reinstate a 60-day delay on landlord notices of evictions if tenants have filed official applications for rental assistance and extend the period for actual evictions from 72 hours to 10 days. Read the news article here.
As the number of eviction writings rose in the fourth quarter of 2022, tenants and advocates are calling for lawmakers to renew these protections. Over 55 out of the nearly 80 witnesses who signed up expressed support for the bill, while 25 opposed it. More than 268 written testimonies were submitted. Shout out to Mearl Grabill and the seniors at Eugene Hotel for submitting 17 different testimonies. You can read Eugene Tenant Alliance’s testimony here.
Displacement Prevention Assistance and Phase 2 City of Eugene Renter Protections
Thank you to everyone who responded to last week’s action alert and emailed the city council about canceling the hearing on Renter Protections Phase 2. If you missed it, here is a letter to the editor that sums it up. We spoke with the Mayor on Thursday, and she said “You all have been very loud and clear on this topic. We are scheduling the hearing as soon as possible.”
Phase 2 will make a brief pit stop at the Housing Policy Board this coming Monday at 12 noon.
If you have time, please join us and provide public comment in support of Displacement prevention assistance. Here are the meeting details:
Housing Policy Board - Monday, Feb. 6, 2023 12pm
To join this meeting from your computer, tablet or smartphone:
Thank you for your continued support.