Make a phone call, ask questions to the legislators (Ask the representative what the legislator’s opinion on SB 939 is and how the legislator proposes to vote on the bill once it gets to the floor.) then write a short essay (mainly about how you were treated by your legislator’s staff and what your opinion of this exercise is) three quarters to a page. Please see below for specific details.
Senate Bill SB 939 is being introduced in the California Legislature, which could seriously impact California real property investors. Authored by Senators Scott Weiner (D) San Francisco and Lena Gonzalez (D) Long Beach and Co-authored by Assembly Members Kalra, Bonta, Chiu and Ting. The Bill which is currently in the Committee Stage is aimed at commercial tenants and would prohibit a commercial landlord from serving notice on a commercial tenant for non-payment of rent during Covid 19 and is aimed primarily at tenants occupying eating and drinking establishments. Primarily SB 939 would:
•Make it illegal to serve notice to terminate a tenancy until a FULL YEAR AFTER the State’s COVID-19 Emergency Order expires.
•Give one party the upper hand over the other by making the common act of serving a notice to terminate a tenancy subject to a $2,000 penalty.
•Allow restaurants, bars, and entertainment venues with a decline in revenue as compared to before shelter in place (SIP) and facing an ongoing reduction of capacity to engage in good faith negotiations with their landlord to modify any rent or economic requirement regardless of the term remaining on the lease.
•Should the tenant and landlord not be able to reach a mutually satisfactory agreement, the tenant shall have the option to terminate the lease and not be liable for more than three months rent from the start of the SIP to cover the entire rest of the lease term.
•SB 939 will be in effect for at least 22 months from March 2020 until December 31, 2021, or two months after the end of the state of emergency, whichever is later.
•The bill does not apply to any publicly-traded company or a company that is owned by or is affiliated with a publicly-traded company (franchisee)
There is a link below if you want to read up more about the bill, then identify the offices of two state legislators one democrat and one republican and call their offices and say you’d like to talk about Senate Bill 939. You will most probably get a field representative, highly unlikely you will get the legislator. Ask the representative what the legislator’s opinion on SB 939 is and how the legislator proposes to vote on the bill once it gets to the floor.
You personally may think their proposal is a good idea, or you may feel that this bill unfairly shifts the burden of one sector of the business community to another. Feel free to ask questions and enter into a discussion but stay civil and don’t get into any arguments. I am more interested in how you were received, politely, belligerently, whether the staffs were forthcoming or defensive, where they engaged or did you feel you were getting the brush off? I am not so much interested in the ins and outs of the bill, rather how you were treated by your legislator’s staff and what your opinion of this exercise is – remember, it is your right as a citizen to question your legislators. About three quarters to a page will be sufficient.
Do not contact a congressional office, this is a state issue.