Large rent increases issued to hundreds of tenants by Page Mill Properties have East Palo Alto's City Council considering an emergency ordinance Thursday night to freeze current apartment rents in the city.
More than 200 tenants attended a city Rent Stabilization Board meeting Dec. 12 to complain about rent increases from Page Mill Properties of between 14 and 47 percent. The Palo Alto firm owns about 1,400 apartments west of the freeway.
City staff believes the announced rent increases are illegal, according to a staff report.
Some residents who are on fixed, Social Security disability incomes cannot afford the increases, which were announced in late November and are scheduled to go into effect Feb. 1.
The scheduled action Thursday night will be to set a moratorium on apartment rent increases in the city until June 30.
The Rent Stabilization Board established a 3.2 percent maximum rent increase for 2007 for continuing renters, which does not affect apartments that become vacant.
About 2,500 apartments in the city are under the city's rent stabilization ordinance, and more than half of those are owned by Page Mill Properties.
The City Council is scheduled to meet at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 3 at City Hall, 2415 University Ave.