“Rental registry”, Monterey Herald – Sept. 20, 2023
The Monterey City Council has really missed the mark (with the exception of council member Ed Smith) with the Rental Registry ordinance. This registry is nothing more than a feel-good waste of money and resources. Can the city point to any other city that has enacted this ordinance and seen availability skyrocket and rents plummet? This ordinance does absolutely nothing toward providing more housing or increasing the affordability of housing. In fact, it will likely have the opposite effect. Landlords of multi-unit properties who respect tenure in tenancy and rent below market rate to long-term tenants may be in a position to raise rents to not appear discriminatory or arbitrary. Potential buyers of rental property will think twice before investing in a city in which they must disclose information that is typically confidential between a landlord and tenant (the tenant may disclose this information anytime they feel wronged). Under this ill-conceived ordinance, the property owner’s hands are tied … all tenant contractual agreements will become public records and be scrutinized. Every city or state (including California) that has attempted to regulate private rental property in one way or the other has seen rents increase and availability decrease. Government interference in private property or private business should be restricted to that which is absolutely necessary for health and safety. If the city council, as they have said, is only interested in the rental stock and prices (which the exclusion of ADUs brings into doubt), the information is readily available on Craigslist and the US Census. And, it won’t cost $400,000 to access.
— Tony Sollecito, Pebble Beach