Oakland voters in November will be deciding on three new measures.
The three new measures include a tax on vacant properties, increase the real estate transfer tax rate for properties worth more than $2 million and disallow landlords from evicting tenants on the grounds that the landlord lives in the property.
The vacant property tax, which must pass by a two-thirds majority, would impose a special parcel tax on all vacant property — including lots, industrial and commercial buildings, and units in apartment buildings and other multi-unit buildings like condo or townhouse complexes.
The measure was passed during Tuesday’s marathon city council meeting which lasted into the early morning hours of Wednesday. Landlords spoke out against the measures, mostly claiming they would put an unfair burden on small “mom-and-pop” landlords who may only have one rental property and rely on that income. Tenants’ rights activists supported the measures, and shared stories of landlords treating tenants unfairly, as well as the need for housing.