Attention all mobilehome park residents. We successfully made it through the review of the Mobilehome Rent Stabilization Ordinance by the Yucaipa Rent Review Commission. Now their recommendations need to be approved by Yucaipa City Council. A special meeting of the City Council will be held at 2:30 pm on Monday, July 11, at City Hall. Interested parties should be sure to attend. We want to let City Council know we want no changes to the recommendations submitted by the Rent Review Commission.
On Tuesday, May 17, 2022, the Yucaipa Mobilehome Rent Review Commision held its Biennial Review of the Rent Stabilization Ordinance and related Administrative Rules. The newly empaneled Commissioners include Chairperson Brandy Gomez, Vice-Chairperson Bob Miller, Commissioners Randy Allen, John Chiu and William Reagan. Also in attendance for the hearing was YMRA Chairperson Shirley Dalton. Representing mobilehome park owners were Robert Evans, Inland Empire Representative, Manufactured Housing Educational Trust (MHET), and Julie Paule, Regional Representative, Western Manufactured Housing Communities.
The hearing lasted from 1 PM until about 4.30 PM and became somewhat heated at times. The City Council Chambers (site of the hearing) was standing room only and the room next door had to be opened to accommodate all those attending. Thanks to all YMRA members and mobilehome park residents who were there to show support for YMRA positions on the issues.
There were 15 Agenda items, ranging from a proposal to alter the calculation formula for annual space rent increases to the method for selecting a Resident Representative to liaison with the City. Not many changes were made to the existing Ordinance. The formula for calculating annual space rent increases remains at 80% of Consumer Price Index (CPI) or 4% of current space rent whichever is less. You may have noticed a larger than usual increase this year. Last year's CPI was 7.9%, so 80% would have been 6.32%. The 4% cap kicked in so our increase was higher than past years but not as high as it could have been without the cap. Considering the inflation rate this year hovering around 10%, we will definitely be happy that the 4% cap on increases will remain for next year.
Some minor changes were made to the formulas for calculating space rent increases on vacant park spaces. These will not affect current residents, only new residents moving into previously vacant spaces.
Some stakeholders had requested an automatic pass-through to residents of capital improvement costs or increased property taxes arising as a result of sale of a mobilehome park. Both these changes were voted down by the Commission. This will ensure park residents keep a voice in any capital improvements they may have to pay for through a rent increase.
One problem that has concerned YMRA, lack of notice to park residents when a Commission hearing is scheduled, was addressed this year. For future meetings, the City Staff and Commissioners approved a change in notification. Notice will be posted in the local newspaper, ''Yucaipa/Calimesa News Mirror'' and will be sent to all Resident Representatives, or the park manager if there is no Representative.
Which brings us to another significant change important to mobilehome park residents. We are required by the City Ordinance to elect a Resident Representative from each park in the City to act as liaison with the City. They would receive notices and information relevant to residents and can act to inform the City of problems within their park. As of today, only 7 out of 41 parks in Yucaipa have elected Resident Representatives. Changes were made to the prcedure for this election that we hope will encourage more poeple to volunteer to fill this necessary position.
In all, I think park residents in Yucaipa did well as a result of the Commission's decisions. However, keep in mind these changes still need to be confirmed by Yucaipa City Council. A date for their review of these changes has not been set as of today, 19 May 2022.