Gov. Newsom has signed into law SB 91, a bill that provides financial assistance to qualifying housing providers and tenants of up to 80 percent of the unpaid rent accrued since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The COVID relief legislation passed by Congress with bipartisan support and signed into law in December set aside $25 billion for direct financial relief to rental property providers through the states. SB 91 establishes the rules for distributing those funds in California based on the framework established by the federal stimulus bill. C.A.R. worked closely with California Members of Congress to ensure that direct assistance to rental property owners was included in the overall legislation.
Additionally, SB 91 extends the current statewide eviction moratorium law until June 30, 2021. The state eviction moratorium parallels the federal eviction moratorium initiated in September 2020, recently extended through March and which will likely be extended further by Congress. C.A.R. anticipates that the passage of SB 91 will prevent other, more restrictive state moratorium proposals from moving forward, including AB 15 (Chiu), which C.A.R. opposes.
SB 91 had no declared opposition. C.A.R. took a formal “neutral” position on SB 91, as did other rental housing organizations, reflecting the extraordinary and unique circumstances caused by COVID-19.
C.A.R. will be preparing a Legal Q&A on the new law to follow soon. Further regulations are expected once the law is passed to address the particulars of the distribution of funds the law calls for.