City Council protects tenants, no evictions for the next two months

Jun Starkey, Editor-in-Chief

Santa Barbara residents who are unable to pay their rents for April and May will not be evicted from their homes or businesses.

The Santa Barbara City Council voted 7-0 Tuesday for a moratorium on the eviction of commercial and residential tenants.

“In order to combat the spread of this virus, we have to stay home,” said councilmember Megan Harmon. “Given that, tenants deserve, and they should have the security of knowing that for the duration of this crisis, they’ll be able to maintain the status quo.” 

The council did not set a deadline for the rents to be repaid, with councilmembers agreeing that property owners and landlords could work this out with tenants individually.

Tenants would have to show their landlords provide evidence of the COVID-19 pandemic affecting their ability to pay rent. This could range from their work hours being cut to a family member being infected. 

Tenants would have to notify their landlords before April and May 20 if they are unable to pay rent for that month.