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Berkeley landlords throw a party to celebrate end of eviction moratorium

Flickr / Creative Commons

Landlords with the Berkeley Property Owners Association will gather today to celebrate the end of the eviction moratorium — the COVID-era tenant protection that banned most evictions.

Landlords say the eviction moratorium caused them to lose months of rent, and subjected them to tenants who "took advantage" of the fact that they could not be evicted for nonpayment.

Rent Board chair Leah Simon-Weisberg described celebrating the end of the moratorium as self-involved. 

“It’s just very insensitive to what people are facing,” she told Berkeleyside.

Simon-Weisberg says landlords were supported by billions of dollars in state rental relief during the moratorium. She argued that claims tenants took advantage of the protections to get free housing do not reflect the reality for most people.

On September first, Berkeley became the last city in Alameda County to end its eviction moratorium. Neighboring cities, like Oakland, have seen an onslaught of eviction cases since ending their moratoriums earlier this summer. Los Angeles, which ended its moratorium in April, has already seen a spike in homelessness.

Members of the Tenant And Neighborhood Councils—a Bay Area-wide tenant union also known as TANC—say they plan to protest the party at the Freehouse Pub in Berkeley.

Alastair Boone is the Co-Editor in Chief of Street Spirit newspaper, and a member of KALW's 2024 Audio Academy.