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New Emergency Orders Limit Loud Construction Activities, Suspend Plastic Bag Ban, Extend Fire Permits, and Prevent Interest on Rent
May 8, 2020
SANTA MONICA, Calif. – Today, the City of Santa Monica issued a fourth revised first supplement adding greater specificity to the prohibition on landlords collecting interest on accrued rent for tenants impacted by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). Additionally, Interim City Manager and Director of Emergency Services Lane Dilg signed a thirteenth emergency order limiting the hours for certain types of construction to prevent excessive noise in neighborhoods while the Safer at Home orders are in place. It also temporarily suspends Santa Monica’s plastic bag ban to align with direction from the state and makes explicit that anyone working in Santa Monica before March 1, 2020, is eligible for the City’s housing programs. The expiration for annual Fire permits is now extended through July 1, 2020. Details are as follows:
The Fourth Revised First Supplement
The Fourth Revised First Supplement modifies the eviction moratorium as it applies to commercial tenants. The Supplement defines a subset of commercial tenants, “non-retail commercial tenants,” as commercial tenants in office buildings, other than non-profits, who do not collect sales tax on greater than 50% of their revenues and do not provide medical, dental, veterinary, fitness, educational, or child, marriage, family, mental health, or substance abuse counseling services. With respect to these non-retail commercial tenants, the Supplement specifies that the eviction moratorium will apply only for a period of 30 days after the expiration of the Order. The Supplement also specifies that with respect to rent unpaid due to financial impacts related to COVID-19, landlords may not charge residential tenants interest on that unpaid rent for a period of 12 months following the expiration of the Order, may not charge commercial tenants (other than non-retail commercial tenants) interest on that unpaid rent for a period of 90 days following the expiration of the Order, and may not charge non-retail commercial tenants interest on that unpaid rent for the duration of the Order.
The Thirteenth Supplement
- Incorporates the provision of the Third Revised First Supplement that, in accordance with the Governor’s Executive Order suspending state law provisions, the City will suspend prohibiting retail establishments from (a) providing without charge reusable grocery bags or recycled paper bags to customers at point of sale, or (b) where it is not possible to provide reusable grocery bags or recycled paper bags, providing single-use plastic carryout bags to customers at point of sale.
- Incorporates the provisions of the Third Revised First Supplement that add language to the City’s Housing Trust Fund and Affirmative Housing Production Program Guidelines to extend eligibility to individuals who were working in Santa Monica prior to March 1, 2020, but lost employment due to COVID-19 related reasons.
- Further extends to July 1, 2020 the expiration of Fire Department annual permits of operation.
- Limits to between the hours of 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. on weekdays the conduct of certain loud construction activities as defined by the Thirteenth Supplement, including cement cutting or grinding, sandblasting, and the use of pile drivers, jackhammers, or pavement breakers, at construction projects other than public works construction. All other construction activity remains permitted during regular construction hours and must comply with Santa Monica Municipal Code § 4.12.110.
“These modifications to our local emergency come as we take the first visible steps toward recovery this week with some local businesses reopening,” said Interim City Manager Lane Dilg, the City’s Director of Emergency Services. “We continue to take every step we can to address the needs of our residents and local businesses in this public health emergency. We appreciate the ongoing efforts of our residents to remain vigilant as Stay at Home / Safer at Home orders begin to safely and carefully lift.”
For questions about the City’s eviction moratorium, please visit santamonica.gov/coronavirus, or call the City’s Coronavirus Hotline at (310) 458-8400. For help in completing the tenant notice form or if you would like to file a complaint regarding eviction activity in violation of the order, please contact the Public Rights Division of the City Attorney’s Office at (310) 458-8336, or Consumer.Mailbox@smgov.net.