LOS FELIZ—Homelessness in Los Angeles increased to 16 percent and up to 53 percent in District 4 which includes Los Feliz, parts of Silverlake and San Fernando Valley in 2018. Los Angeles City Councilmember David Ryu introduced another motion this week proposing to reform the Ellis Act.

The state law enacted in 1985 allows landlords to evict tenants if they intend on exiting the rental market business. Ryu believes this motion to reform the law will decrease evictions in order to protect tenants which in turn will support affordable housing in the area.

“We are in a lopsided housing crisis that continues to develop homes for those at the top while ignoring the rest…This crisis is not only driving low-income and working families into homelessness, it’s also putting middle class Angelenos at risk,” said Councilmember Ryu in a statement in defense of his proposed legislation.

Ryu co-introduced the legislation proposal with Councilmember Mike Bonin of the 11th District. Ryu indicates in his statement that the Ellis Act “[which] intended to help mom and pop property owners get out of the rental business has been exploited by developers seeking to demolish longtime, rent controlled rental units to build new market rate units, luxury units or high end condominiums.”

He wants to restrict landlords protected under the Ellis Act only to property owners who have owned property for at least five years. The new motion will also limit the number of evictions per year and provide a one year notice of eviction to tenants.

Ryu previously called for a reform of the Ellis Act in a statement after the release of the LAHSA Homelessness report earlier this month.