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2021 Legislative Priorities

Combatting Homelessness

BOMA/GLA is committed to addressing the biggest crisis facing Greater Los Angeles: Homelessness.

Homelessness is a humanitarian crisis; it’s a public health crisis; it’s an economic crisis – and it’s holding back both the people who experience it and our entire region.

BOMA/GLA is therefore working on all fronts to address this crisis.

Through our partnership with The People Concern, we have developed numerous volunteer, donation, and educational opportunities for our members to directly help individuals experiencing homelessness.

We are also leading the charge to tell our elected officials that it’s time to Build Shelter Now. Alongside a diverse coalition of residents, businesses, and community groups we demand urgency from our elected city leaders to solve the homelessness problem now.

This includes building enough shelter space to accommodate our homeless population and setting clear regulations around camping to ensure the safety of individuals experiencing homelessness and the broader public.

 

Safe Building Reentry – ASAP

While some coronavirus closures remain in place, Governor Newsom announced that the economy is set to reopen on June 15.

Class-A office buildings are some of the safest indoor spaces in preventing the spread of COVID-19.

BOMA/GLA is focused on providing local and state government guidance on policies that will help tenants reenter buildings safely, and highlighting the immense safety and sanitation protocols that members have implemented in their buildings.

We are also giving up-to-date information to our members on safe reentry.

 

Addressing the Eviction Moratorium

While our government will probably not lift the eviction moratorium until it allows the economy to fully reopen, we are engaging officials to address the most problematic components of this policy:

  • Abuse of the process from tenants who are able to pay rent but choose not to.
  • LA City not requiring financial disclosure from non-paying tenants.
  • Office tenants and well-resourced companies often not needing eviction protections.
  • The accumulation of months of past owed rent, and how to create rules for quick rent payback.

 

Oppose AB 255

BOMA/GLA opposes AB 255, a bill that would enable some of your tenants to not only avoid rent payment until August 2022 but also permit them to prioritize rent last.

While more limited in scope, this bill has many of the same core problems that SB 939 had last year: It permits many commercial tenants to abrogate their contracts with their building owners.

This is both only bad policy, which we believe is unconstitutional, and sets many terrible precedents:

  • It singles out one sector (buildings) as the lowest priority to receive payment for bills they are owed. Furthermore, it incentivizes nonpayment of rent.
  • It encourages companies in financial trouble to not take advantage of bankruptcy protections – a much more sustainable process than letting them accumulate more debt – and further inflates the debt these companies owe.
  • It singles out one sector to provide its product without cost to others.

 

VICTORY: Maintain Funding for Public Safety

Earlier this year, LA City Council considered reducing the number of sworn officers to 2002 levels (when the murder rate was nearly double what it is today) and closing important divisions that protect BOMA/GLA members like the Olympic Station.

BOMA/GLA members heavily rely on public safety to respond to threats to their building. Maintaining public safety services is even more important as we reopen after COVID-19: After all, tenants want to work in safe areas.

BOMA/GLA successfully mobilized our members to press the City to maintain the same level of sworn officers. Thanks to our work alongside a diverse group of coalition partners, LAPD and the City reached a compromise to preserve staffing levels.

 

Cutting Red Tape

Every day that tenants cannot return to the office and that Angelenos are not patronizing our business does immense damage to our members and the broader economy. Cutting red tape to enable tenants to get back to business ASAP is therefore a top priority for us this year. This includes:

  • Advocating for architects to self-certify plan checks on basic tenant improvement projects. This will not bypass other important safety inspections but will trim weeks (and sometimes months) off a tenant improvement project. It will also free Department of Building and Safety staff to devote their time to more complicated projects where their attention is needed.
  • Suspending requirements for restaurants to renew permits that expired throughout the COVID-19 closure. This will enable our restaurant tenants to reopen faster and save money. It will also draw people back to LA’s commercial corridors to enjoy restaurants and other amenities again.

 

We will keep you apprised as local governments and the State Legislature consider bills impacting our industry over the coming months.