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California Proposition 10: Repeal Costa Hawkins

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This proposition would allow cities to expand their rent control ordinances by repealing the 1995 law known as Costa Hawkins.


Costa Hawkins currently limits rent control two major ways. One, it exempts certain kinds of buildings from regulation: single family homes and condos and newly constructed buildings. Second, it prohibits “vacancy control” or cities’ ability to keep a unit rent controlled from one tenant to the next over time. Instead, when a new tenant comes in, rent can go up as much as the market will bear. If Costa Hawkins is repealed, cities can choose to remake their local ordinances without these limitations.

The coalition behind the Proposition 10 campaign is made up of community based and housing advocacy and tenants organizations as well as labor unions. They say expanding rent control is the only immediate way to stabilize cities rocked by displacement and homelessness. They say local communities should have control over their ordinances, not a single state law. They've raised 12.6 million dollars for the campaign.


The opposition campaign has raised 34.7 million dollars. It’s led by the state and national realtors associations and other pro-development and homeowners groups. They say if cities expand their ordinances it will hurt the very people Proposition 10 supporters aim to protect. They say it will discourage new construction and maintenance of existing buildings. They say it will put small landlords out of business, thereby shrinking the stock of rental housing.

So if you want to repeal Costa Hawkins and give cities the power to expand local rent control, vote yes on Proposition 10. If you want to maintain the existing state-wide law, vote no.