Reversing course after extensive criticism, Elk Grove City Council will consider eviction moratorium at Wednesday meeting

After hearing widespread criticism for their vote at a special meeting last Wednesday, four of the five Elk Grove City Council member...

After hearing widespread criticism for their vote at a special meeting last Wednesday, four of the five Elk Grove City Council members reversed and now support considering an eviction notice. The vote, which was 5 - 0 saw Vice Mayor Steve Detrick and Councilmembers Pat Hume, Stephanie Nguyen, and Darren Suen follow the lead of Mayor Steve Ly, who last week was the sole councilmember supporting an eviction moratorium.

Like last week's session, tonight's special meeting was conducted online with all the members calling in, and the meeting was made available online to the public. Some comments from the public were heard live via telephone, and many of them were read into the record by City Clerk Jason Lindgren.

After hearing about two dozen of the more than 80 comments submitted for the record, the city council held a brief deliberation agreed and to add the item to the Wednesday night meeting. The ordinance, which will be prepared by city staff, will be presented as urgency and regular ordinances.

If the city council adopts the ordinance on an urgency basis, it will become effective immediately. However, by law, it will require a supermajority of 4 votes.

The same ordinance will also be considered as a regular item that requires a simple majority. Unlike the urgency basis, a regular ordinance will take approximately six weeks to take effect.

If the urgency ordinance is adopted, it is believed the regular item will be dropped. Should the urgency ordinance fail, it would take three votes for the regular, and in their comments, Nguyen and Suen signaled they change course from their vote last week and join Ly in passing a moratorium.

During deliberations, Hume, who led last week's charge against residential renters and small businesses in the city, requested that eviction ordinances be split between commercial and residential rules. The ordinance, particularly for the residential, would also address a moratorium on late fees by the city's contracted garbage collection, Republic Services.

Even though the ordinances will be split when presented at the Wednesday meeting, city attorney Jonathan Hobss recommended they be considered as one. The council dismissed Hobbs' recommendation. 

Although there were over 80 comments submitted, not all were read into the record. Of the comments read into the record and phoned-in, except for one person, all urged the city council to enact protections for renters and small business owners.

After their action last week, Detrick, Hume, Nguyen, and Suen were widely criticized on social media, with many urges for constituents to contact the four opponents of the renter relief and express displeasure. Detrick said over the weekend, he received over 100 text messages, although he did not disclose the nature of the comments.

Although Hume and Detrick voted to put the matter on Wednesday's agenda, they did not indicate they would support any sort of renter or small business assistance. 

Copyright by Elk Grove News © 2020. All right reserved.


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