A county-run relief fund for small landlords should be operational within weeks, L.A. County Supervisor Kathryn Barger said on Wednesday.
“This is where the bureaucracy is going to drive me crazy,” Barger, speaking to around 250 property owners, said in response to a question about when the funding might be available. “But the bottom line is, within the next two weeks. We’ve got the infrastructure in place, the money’s there. We know that we need to get it out there.”
Barger, whose district encompasses a sprawling section of northern L.A. County, made the comment as part of a webinar hosted by Apartment Association of Greater Los Angeles, the regional property owners’ advocacy group, and moderated by its Executive Director Dan Yukelson.
The L.A. County Board of Supervisors approved Barger’s motion for the new funding in late January, after almost three years of pandemic-centered legislative protections that many landlords feel have unfairly sacrificed their livelihoods.
The $45 million program is intended to benefit L.A. County small landlords who have suffered from tenants’ nonpayment, and will award property owners up to $30,000 per unit.
“I know this money will not make everyone whole,” Berger added on Wednesday, “but I believe it is a major step in the right direction.”
The supervisor, who has joined her colleagues in voting for tenant protections but also has emerged as one of the board’s strongest landlord advocates, offered comments expressing sympathy with small landlords and outrage at what has become a complicated bureaucratic assortment of moratoria and emergency orders.
“You all have been left out,” she said at one point. “You are not included in the discussion.”
But she didn’t have a clear answer when Yukelson asked if the board, which recently voted to extend the county eviction moratorium through the end of March, might extend the measure yet again.
“So Supervisor (Holly) Mitchell and I have been consistent with, ‘It’s time to stop this madness,’” Barger replied. She also explained that she had supported the recent extension because of a landlord-focused amendment it included.
She added: “I cannot predict what my colleagues will do.”
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