The Affordable Housing Alliance Political Action Committee was founded in 1981 by veterans of tenants’ rights struggles who realized not having a political action committee to elect pro-tenant Supervisors was holding back their efforts.
In a stinging loss, a 1979 housing initiative to bring effective rent control and other tenant and affordable housing protections had been defeated despite a strong coalition effort.
All that was in place were weak rent increase guidelines, triggered only when a tenant petitioned for their application. Worse yet, the temporary guidelines allowed 7% rent increases, and even so were set to expire. They had only been enacted in part to head off the earlier unsuccessful 1979 initiative.
The creation of the Affordable Housing Alliance Political Action Committee led to immediate success: It convinced the Supervisors to extend the law indefinitely, and convert its weak guidelines to enforceable legal limits of real rent control. With elections looming, and the promise of a tenant committee making pro-tenant endorsements for the first time, a majority of the Supervisors voted for the landmark legislation.
True to their word, the very next year, 1982, the Affordable Housing Alliance Political Action Committee began informing tenant voters which candidates would stick up for them and which were beholden to big landlord and real estate interests by mailing renters voter guides targeted to tenant voters.
Affordable Housing Alliance Political Action Committee-endorsed candidates for Supervisor did well and candidates who were not, or who received negative endorsements lost, or fared less well.
The Affordable Housing Alliance Political Action Committee Board of Supervisors endorsements and accompanying campaigns led to a continuing series of victories: a ban on condo conversions of buildings of more than 6 apartments and an annual limit of 200 condo conversions in smaller buildings; the subsequent defense of that law at the ballot box on three separate occasions; lowering the rent annual increase from 7% to a CPI formula that immediately sliced increases to 4% and subsequently to increases of about 1%; the right to earn interest on security deposits at the then-rate of 5%; the right to appeal rent increases for capital improvements; numerous improvements to the accompanying just cause eviction provisions; saving the Orangeland Chinatown apartments from demolition; the appointment of strong tenant advocates to the Rent Board; the extension of rent control and just cause eviction protection to owner-occupied buildings of four units or less; roommate protections; an inclusionary housing ordinance; the right for tenants to leaflet their fellow building tenants; better protection from unfair utility and other pass-throughs; better relocation benefits; the defeat of numerous anti-rent control bills in Sacramento and the blunting of others; the restoration of the Renters Tax Credit; and most recently a tightening of the ban on the conversion of affordable apartments to condominiums to prohibit most conversions entirely until production of new affordable housing catches up to the number of units lost.
Today the Affordable Housing Alliance Political Action Committee is on the forefront of the battle: fighting Ellis and other evictions, fighting to protect rent-controlled housing, fighting the conversion of apartments to Airbnb and other tourist hotel units, and fighting for more affordable housing.
The Affordable Housing Alliance Political Action Committee is a registered California political committee. Our mailing address is 3265 Harrison SF CA 94110. Our campaign identification number is 822268. Some of our activities qualify as slate mailings and our identification number for those activities is 594003.