SANTA BARBARA — The city of Santa Barbara Attorney’s Office released information last week pertaining to the local impacts that Assembly Bill 3088 will have on the city’s temporary eviction moratorium ordinance.
AB 3088 was signed by Gov. Gavin Newson on Aug. 31 and immediately went into effect.
Local landlords are now required to provide tenants who have deferred rent due to COVID-19 a special notice of AB 3088’s provisions by Sept. 30. The city’s eviction moratorium expires Sept. 30, though due to AB 3088 local residents who deferred rent up to Aug. 31 cannot be evicted for non-payment of this rent. Instead, AB 3088 converts the deferred rental debt into consumer debt collectable by the property owner in small claims court.
AB 3088 now requires a state law-based form for COVID-19 financial hardship declaration by tenants, according to City Attorney Ariel Calonne.
Other impacts include: rental debt deferred under the city’s moratorium must be replaced in 12 equal monthly installments beginning March 1, 2021; and rent deferred between Sept. 1 and Jan. 31, 2021, will be governed by AB 3088, not the city’s moratorium. Tenants should send their landlord new financial hardship declarations, and high-income tenants must document their financial hardship. Tenants cannot be evicted for non-payment of rent during this period if they pay at least 25% of their rent by Jan. 31, 2021.
Mr. Calonne cautioned that AB 3088 “is brand new,” and requirements are subject to change.
— Mitchell White