rent control advocate quietly demolishing rent control

One of the primary advocates of rent control in San Francisco is apparently using his landlord status to demolish the very same rent control in San Francisco

Randy Shaw runs Tenderloin Housing Clinic, which has a contract with the city to ‘master lease’ SRO hotel rooms for homeless people in San Francisco. Tenderloin Housing Clinic does not own any of these buildings except for a newly constructed housing at 785 Brannan, The Galvin Apartments. All 16 other buildings are privately owned, usually by a Patel and is then master leased under contract with Tenderloin Housing Clinic which then acts as a property manager for the owner. Tenderloin Housing Clinic then contracts with the City of San Francisco to pay for all the extra support services for housing homeless people in these privately owned SRO’s

What apparently has gone unnoticed is a change in eviction filings in the last couple of years in which Tenderloin Housing Clinic is now claiming these privately owned SRO rooms are no longer under rent control and are considered newly constructed buildings. The problem is the only newly constructed building Tenderloin Housing Clinic owns is the Galvin Apartments at 785 Brannan. All 16 other SRO’s that Tenderloin Housing Clinic runs are very old buildings built around the turn of the century and have always been subject to San Francisco rent control laws

This is an example of a recent eviction filing by Tenderloin Housing Clinic (landlord) at 41 Jones, a very old SRO building

thc.v.orso-UD by Jeff Webb

On page 8 of this eviction filing is the following addition. This is a very recent addition and did not exist in older eviction filings before a few years ago

The question is how does 41 Jones, a very old building with historic status become a brand new building not subject to rent control?

What Tenderloin Housing Clinic has been doing is refurbishing rooms either when somebody moves out or sometimes temporary relocation of current tenants under city contract. Tenderloin Housing Clinic then re-tiles the floors, repaints the rooms and then calls it a brand new room

The problem is that this is illegal. In order for a rent control protected building to be considered a new building built after 1979, a building must be declared 90% condemned by the city, so that a building is basically demolished and rebuilt. This has happened with other SRO’s which have been bought by other non profits like Tenderloin Neighborhood Development Corporation and the Dalt hotel as an example. A special permit to demolish a building must be obtained by the San Francisco Department of Building inspection. Last year only 4 permits where approved in the entire city of San Francisco. 41 Jones was not one of them nor was Tenderloin Housing Clinic.
560 Jessie/529 Stevenson is an example of a gutted building which needs a special permit

Permit: 201010143017
Form: 3 – Alterations With Plans
Filed: 10/14/2010
Address: 527 STEVENSON ST
Existing: OFFICE
Proposed: APARTMENTS
Existing Units: 0
Proposed Units: 67
Status: ISSUED
Status Date: 6/1/2012 3:36:21 PM
Description: INTERIOR RENOVATION & REMODELING OF COMMERCIAL BUILDING TO 67 RESIDENTIAL UNITS WITH (E) PARKING TO REMAIN GROUND FLOOR, 210 SQUARE FEET COMMERCIAL USE.CHANGE OF USE
Cost: $4,745,676.00

Furthermore, under Tenderloin Housing Clinic ‘master lease’ agreement with the SRO owners, tenderloin Housing Clinic is not authorized to do major structural changes that would result in a historic building being condemned and rebuilt

So what’s really going on here is that San Francisco city money is being used to refurbish and alter privately run historic SRO buildings and then claiming in court documents that the buildings (or rooms within the buildings) are no longer under rent control. Since most of the people being evicted in these civil proceedings are formally homeless and vulnerable people, they of course cannot afford good attorneys that would challenge this

Once the eviction is approved, the previously rent controlled room becomes permanently non rent controlled. This is how the City of San Francisco is actually using tax money to circumvent and demolish rent control in San Francisco

Historic Preservation Report: 41 Jones
Glossary

Historic preservation surveys and evaluations. The Historic Resource status shown on this page is tentative, to confirm the status of your property please speak to a Preservation Technical Specialist. Tel: 415-558-6377; Email: pic@sfgov.org

HISTORIC EVALUATION:
Parcel: 0349002
Building Name: HOTEL BOYD
Address: 39 – 41 JONES ST
Planning Dept. Historic Resource Status: A – Historic Resource Present
California Register: Y
National Register: Y

ARTICLE 10 DESIGNATED HISTORIC DISTRICTS AND LANDMARKS:
None

ARTICLE 11 PRESERVATION DESIGNATION:
Article 11 Category: I – SIGNIFICANT BUILDING, NO ALTERATIONS

NATIONAL REGISTER HISTORIC DISTRICTS:
Historic District: Upper Tenderloin

HISTORIC SURVEYS:
Parcel: 0349002
Survey Name: Upper Tenderloin
CEQA Category: A – Historic Resource Present
Evaluation Date: 1/1/2009
Survey Rating:
Rating Description:
Parcel: 0349002
Survey Name: UNREINFORCED MASONRY BUILDINGS
CEQA Category: B – Potential Historic Resource
Evaluation Date: 1/1/1990
Survey Rating:
Rating Description:
Parcel: 0349002
Survey Name: FOUNDATION FOR SF ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE
CEQA Category: A – Historic Resource Present
Evaluation Date: 1/1/1978
Survey Rating: B
Rating Description: MAJOR IMPORTANCE
Parcel: 0349002
Survey Name: DCP 1976 SURVEY Survey field form
CEQA Category: B – Potential Historic Resource
Evaluation Date: 1/1/1976
Survey Rating: 0
Rating Description:

HISTORIC RESOURCE EVALUATION RESPONSES:
None

ARCHITECTURE:
Historic Name: HOTEL BOYD
Year Built: 1906(?)
Architect: WILLIAM HELBING
Builder: UNKNOWN
Style:
Stories: 7B
Height:
Construction Type:
Foundation:
Detail: RENAISSANCE ORNAMENT
Exterior: BRICK,ART.STONE, TERRA COTTA
Current Use: HOTEL, COMMERCIAL
Alterations:
Original Use: HOTEL
Original Owner: RICHARD AND/OR JOSEPH TOBIN
Original Tenant: UNKNOWN
Misc. Notes:
Sources: DTP;
Other Information: THIS TALL RECTANGULAR BLOCK HAS A MODERATE DENTILATED CORNICE ON BRACKETS. ITS THREE LOWER STORIES ARE RUSTICATED AND IT RETAINS THE ORIGINAL STOREFRONT WINDOWS WITH POLYCHROME TILE TRIM ON THE GROUND FLOOR. THE WINDOW AND TERRA COTTA LINTELS IN A CONTRASTING HUE WITH ENLARGED KEYSTONES. THE OFF-CENTER ARCHED ENTRY HAS A RUSTICATED ARCHED OPENING.

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