Longtime UCSB sociology professor and social justice activist Dick Flacks dives into the discussion about rent control in Santa Barbara in the podcast interview below.
Flacks recently contacted me after a Noozhawk story I wrote about the issue. He believed that the report left some key details out and perhaps overstated the impact capping annual rent increases at 2% plus CPI might have on property owners.
We had a brief email exchange, and then I decided to invite him on my show to talk about rent control, affordable housing and local politics.
In podcast conversation below, Flacks talks about creating nonprofit social housing, and relying less on private developers to solve all of the housing needs in the community.
Flacks said rent control is just one way to tackle the issue, but that it also involves working with the city’s Housing Authority to find land and build housing projects, as well as working with the county, Goleta and other entities to take a regional approach to affordable housing.
Property owners, he said, must understand that renting a home is not a business transaction.
“It is not the case that this is a normal business transaction,” Flacks said.
“No one who lives in a rental apartment for any length of time things ‘oh, I am just doing business in having this apartment.’ This is my home, this is my resting place. This is my haven. This is where I make my life. There’s a deep emotional attachment. To simply say it’s a contractual relationship and the market should determine these things, doesn’t make sense to tenants, ever I don’t think.”
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