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Santa Monica Extends Eviction Moratorium Another Month

Bob Kronovetrealty
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Santa Monica

Santa Monica Apartments

Santa Monica College
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Santa Monica, CA 90405
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By Jorge Casuso

June 17, 2020 -- The City on Wednesday extended its eviction moratorium to July 31 for tenants who can show they were unable to pay rent due to the economic fallout of the coronavirus crackdown.

Under the extension, tenants continue to have a year from the time the moratorium ends to come up with the back rent.

The moratorium also extends the moratorium for certain commercial tenants while "narrowing its focus to small businesses most in need of protection," City officials said.

The moratorium no longer covers large businesses, including publicly traded companies and those with more than 100 employees, officials said.

Non-retail commercial tenants who are not large businesses are protected by the moratorium until August 31. As of September 1, the protections will be phased out.

To qualify, tenants must be for-profit businesses that occupy offices and either do not collect sales tax on revenue or collect sales tax on less than half of revenue.

The definition does not cover businesses that provide "medical, dental, veterinary, fitness, educational, or child, marriage, family, mental health, or substance abuse counseling services," City officials said.

Under the moratorium, tenants must notify their landlords in writing that they are unable to pay rent due to COVID-19 and its impacts and provide supporting documentation.

An ongoing survey by the Rent Control Board found that approximately 10 percent of rent control tenants did not pay their full rent in April and May ("One in Ten Santa Monica Rent Control Tenants Failed to Pay Full Rent Last Two Months, Survey Shows," May 28, 2020).

Last month, the City Council allocated $2 million to help between 250 and 450 low-income seniors in rent-controlled apartments make their rent payments.

Another 307 low-and moderate income tenants will receive money to help pay their rent for three months ("City Releases Plan to Restore Programs Slashed Due to Coronavirus Shutdown," May 22, 2020).

The City's eviction moratorium -- which had been previously extended to June 30 -- is "intended to provide some relief to our residents and small businesses, restaurants, stores and offices," Interim City Manager Lane Dilg said when she last extended it on April 30.

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