LOS ANGELES — Mayor Eric Garcetti today issued an emergency order strengthening protections for residential tenants in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and announced that a moratorium on LADWP shutoffs for non-payment would be extended indefinitely.
“Angelenos should be focused on staying healthy, staying safe, and staying at home — and I don’t want anyone who’s hurting financially as a result of this virus to be worried about losing their home or basic necessities,” said Mayor Garcetti. “If you can afford rent and utilities, then please pay them on time. If you’re struggling during this emergency, we’ll do everything possible to help ease and lift those burdens.”
Mayor Garcetti last week issued emergency moratoriums on evictions of residential and commercial tenants in the City of Los Angeles during the local emergency period if the tenant is able to show an inability to pay rent due to circumstances related to the COVID-19 pandemic. He has extended all previously issued emergency orders to April 19, 2020, including previously announced tenant protections.
Those protections were expanded tonight with an order stating: “Residential tenants in the City of Los Angeles may not be evicted during the declared emergency in the City of Los Angeles if the eviction is a ‘no-fault eviction’ and any member of the household is ill, in isolation, or under quarantine. Under this Order, a ‘no-fault eviction’ means any eviction for which the notice to terminate tenancy is not based on an alleged fault of the tenant, including without limitation, eviction notices served under California Code of Civil Procedure sections 1161(1), 1161(5), or 1161c.”
The order also provides tenant protections against Ellis Act evictions, stating: “No party in the City of Los Angeles may remove occupied residential units from the rental market under the Ellis Act while this Order is in effect. Tenancies may not be terminated under the Ellis Act until 60 days after the expiration of this Order.”
“This Order applies to nonpayment eviction notices, no-fault eviction notices, and unlawful detainer actions based on such notices, served or filed on or after the date on which a local emergency was proclaimed. Nothing in this Order shall be construed to mean that the tenant will not still be obligated to pay lawfully charged rent.”
The Mayor also announced this evening that an LADWP moratorium on water and power shutoffs will extend through the end of the local emergency period. Residents should pay their utility bills if they are able, but Angelenos should not be concerned about losing water and power as they cope with the effects of the crisis. Any customer experiencing financial hardship can request a payment plan online at www.ladwp.com.
To assist both residents and businesses during the emergency period, the Mayor’s order allows restaurants to sell alcoholic beverages for delivery or takeout — and relaxes certain parking restrictions on commercial vehicles during the locally declared emergency.
The order modified any and all City of Los Angeles regulations governing the sale of alcoholic beverages to “allow (i) sales of alcoholic beverages by restaurants for off-site consumption are hereby permitted for delivery and take-out and (ii) sales, by retail stores, of alcoholic beverages for off-site consumption, including deliveries and extended sales hours, from 6 a.m. to 2 a.m. daily.
“This Order does not waive, suspend or amend any regulations promulgated by the State, including those under the authority of the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control; nor does it suspend or supersede existing prohibitions against drinking in public and similar regulations pertaining to public consumption and possession of alcohol. Alcoholic beverages sold under this Order must be sold in containers that are fully sealed in a manner designed to prevent consumption without removal of the lid or cap.”
The order also provides that, “Parking enforcement will be relaxed and an extended grace period will be given to vehicles owned and operated by employees or employers who are engaged in manufacturing or healthcare activities listed as essential under the March 15, 2020 Public Order Under City of Los Angeles Emergency Authority and located in permanent or temporary industrial, manufacturing, or commercial zones of the City of Los Angeles.”
Mayor Garcetti has taken a number of emergency measures to combat the spread of the novel coronavirus, including a “Safer at Home” order that requires Angelenos to remain in their homes — with exemptions for critical tasks such as securing food and health, safety and medical necessities, as well as caring for children, elder adults, family, friends and people with disabilities. Additional measures include a plan to quickly shelter thousands of Angelenos experiencing homelessness; restrictions placed on bars, nightclubs, restaurants, movie theaters, entertainment venues, bowling alleys and arcades, gyms and fitness centers; and limits on public gatherings in City facilities.
More details and answers to frequently asked questions can be found at coronavirus.lacity.org.