The Morning Report
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On Tuesday, the National City Council moved forward with a new ordinance that will provide a temporary rent cap for all mobile home parks within city limits. The ordinance goes into effect on Jan. 1, 2023, and is good through the end of 2024.
The decision to intervene in mobile home parks, which typically fall under state jurisdiction, comes after the Keystone Trailer Park increased its rent by 20 percent on July 1. Elected officials said the ordinance was a good first step but acknowledged that more work needed to be done to keep the cost of housing low.
“It is long overdue,” said City Councilman Jose Rodriguez. “We need to make sure that we preserve already-existing affordable units in our city.”
Tenants who had petitioned the city for help — some of whom are living on fixed incomes — said the rent hikes put them at risk of homelessness and expressed gratitude to the Council for listening.
“Thanks to you … I have some peace of mind that I will be able to pay my bills and I will be able to be okay with this rent stabilization,” Sylvia Gardner said.
A similar debate took place in Imperial Beach earlier this year after tenants in the Miramar Imperial Beach Mobile Home and RV Park staged a protest against rent increases and a policy requiring they move out every six months. The Imperial Beach ordinance, approved in October, includes an eviction moratorium and no more than 5 percent annual rent increases.
National City’s ordinance also limits rent increases to 5 percent annually. An earlier version would have pushed the rent caps back to the summer, but elected officials removed that provision after pushback from an industry rep.