Landlords are Blocked from Conducting Background Checks as the Political Cancer of California Continues

Before long the only groups with any rights remaining will be illegals and politicians.

The state of California is on a roll of late with passing legislation that seems intent on making life worse for the citizens. With a number of issues growing in size that cause more problems for residents what better way to show hostility towards your residents than to pass more laws that target them and favor those with less vested participation in the state. The latest is an attempt to make it illegal for landlords to look into the past of prospective renters.

The city of Oakland has just passed a new law that will ban property owners from performing criminal background checks on applicants for rental property. Dubbed Fair Chance Housing Ordinance, this mess of a law continues the liberal ideology of any law with the word ‘’Fair’’ in its heading being a complete mess. Going forward property owners cannot deny a lease to an individual due to a criminal record.

The audaciousness of this new passage is that it flies directly in the face of federal law. A landlord lobby group called The California ApartmentAssociation notes that now landlords are extremely vulnerable, despite legal protections in place already on a national level.

“This ordinance is the most extreme law in the state. Federal Fair Housing laws expressly exclude individuals convicted of illegal drug distribution and manufacture from protections. Landlords who may have used criminal background checks consistent with this law will now be prohibited,” said Debra Carlton, spokesperson for the CAA.

Of course, the backers of the new law trotted out a signature case of a former inmate who has turned his life around and faced challenges of new housing. John Jones III is held up as the very type of individual this law was meant to help — he has served his time and has a decent job, the image of the individual who has turned his life around.

Jones is also a community activist who has campaigned on a number of issues in the Oakland area. He has fronted ‘’Ban The Box’’, calling for the removal of the question on job applications regarding whether an applicant has been convicted of any crime. He has lobbied for minimum wage hike for municipal workers, affordable housing standards, and bail reform. He also was a major push behind this new law.

Now imagine that a prospective renter applies and has a criminal history involving operating a drug den from their residence. There are legitimate concerns if they have a history of sex trafficking, or housing illegals, all details which could concern a property owner and the neighborhood where the housing is located. The federal law addresses these issues, but Oakland will seek to ignore that national statute, something the current mayor is already accustomed to doing.

Mayor Libby Schaaf gained some notoriety a couple of years back when she boldly announced to her community that raids by ICE agents to collect illegal criminals would be taking place. After being alerted by the border agents of their intent instead of aiding law enforcement she decided to tip off the illegal residents in her community of the sweeps. Heer brazen move led to a delay in apprehending the criminals targeted, who were in fact found to have committed new crimes after they had been missed due to the compromised sweeps.

Now her city has decided to overrule existing federal laws meant to protect property owners in her community. It is just another example of the state’s political class displaying open hostility to the citizens and the producers in the state. The tide of this unchecked state-run aggression is beginning to turn.

For all of the purported benefits, residents are in fact fleeing. The growth has slowed to the point that the last census saw the state retain its count of seats in the House of representatives. The expectation is that in 2020 one seat is expected to be lost. And the hostility towards the residents will only continue.

Brad Slager
Covering politics, as well as the business side of Show Business. Expert in fine bourbons, good cigars, competent hockey teams, and horrible movies.

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