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The Lockean Project

“Rental registry”, Monterey Herald, November 21, 2023

On Nov. 7, the Monterey City Council approved a Rental Registry Ordinance. The new ordinance will undoubtedly cause homelessness to increase when rental unit availability goes down, and the shortage leaves people who cannot afford to own with nowhere to rent. The irony is that just one evening later, on Nov. 8, the city was inviting the public to attend a Homeless Housing, Assistance, and Prevention Community Input Session. Ironic for two reasons. First, the City Council just passed an ordinance one night prior that will be a cause of homelessness. Second, the City Council went against community input in order to pass the ordinance. Why was there interest in homelessness and community input on Nov. 8, but no interest on Nov. 7?

Council members and Mayor Tyller Williamson say they are concerned about homelessness. But the rental registry will worsen the problem. The community pleaded with the mayor and council since May, if not earlier, that the community did not want the rental registry. The council passed it anyway, despite wide-scale objections. Under the circumstances, it is difficult to take a request by the city for community input, especially one on the prevention of homelessness, seriously.

— Chris Kramer, Seaside