Mayor Durkan spurns Seattle council’s winter eviction ban, claims it ‘provides no relief’

Feb 26, 2020, 8:30 AM | Updated: 9:30 am

Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan sent a recently-passed ban on winter evictions back to the Seattle City Council unsigned, putting forth her own version she feels provides stronger protections for renters.

Washington renters could get more protections in 2020

Durkan said she decided not to sign the bill because it “does not protect most vulnerable households at risk of evictions.”

The council’s version was scaled back from the original proposal put forth by Councilmember Kshama Sawant, reducing the period of effect from 5 to 3 months, and exempting landlords with four or fewer rental units.

That’s not the biggest problem the mayor has with it, though, claiming that any evicted tenant wouldn’t be protected outright from being evicted during winter months. Rather, tenants could use the bill as a defense if they take their case to court.

Referencing data that says “nearly half of evictions ended in a default judgment because the tenant failed to contest the eviction or appear in court,” Durkan concluded that the council’s bill “provides them no relief.”

Dori: Sawant’s ‘no evictions’ plan means you shouldn’t pay rent anymore

She instead put forth her own bill, sponsored by District 7 Councilmember Andrew Lewis. Durkan says it “invests in proven programs that actually help Seattle residents,” and will include $200,000 in funding for rent assistance.

“The legislation will also ensure that landlords give tenants notice of these programs before taking any action, and that the programs get money in the hands of people when they need it,” she detailed in a letter to the city council.

As SCC Insight’s Kevin Schofield notes, because Durkan didn’t veto the council’s legislation outright, the bill passed earlier in February will go into effect after 30 days if it remains unsigned.

Councilmember Sawant — the original sponsor of that bill — has yet to respond to Durkan’s decision. You can read the mayor’s full proposal here.

Local News

Raymond Azevedo Seattle defund police...
Lisa Brooks

Tacoma Police report increase in stolen guns out of vehicles

Tacoma Police say a lot of stolen guns are making their way onto the street - and many of them come from parked cars and trucks.
8 hours ago
Jake Chapman, KIRO 7 News

Seattle Fire Department responding to historic number of overdose calls

The Seattle Fire Department has responded to a historic number of overdose calls in recent memory.
8 hours ago
FILE - Signage outside PayPal headquarters in San Jose, Calif., is pictured on March 10, 2015. PayP...
Associated Press

PayPal to cut 2,000 jobs in latest tech company cost-cutting

PayPal said Tuesday it will trim about 7% of its total workforce, or about 2,000 full-time workers
8 hours ago
Kathryn Stone

Oregon kidnapping suspect dead after being taken into custody

Law enforcement officials were able to determine that Foster had been accessing dating applications on his phone.
8 hours ago
Seattle likes Taylor Swift songs...
Theresa Robinson, KIRO 7 News

State lawmakers considering ‘TSWIFT Consumer Protection Act’ concerning ticket sales

Following the Ticketmaster meltdown during the presale for Taylor Swift’s ‘Eras’ tour late last year, Washington state lawmakers are considering a new bill
8 hours ago
Friends kitchen...
Micki Gamez

The Friends Experience pop-up opens in Seattle on Feb. 1

The FRIENDS Experience invites fans to step inside the world of the iconic series, relive their favorite moments, and celebrate the show.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

safety from crime...

As crime increases, our safety measures must too

It's easy to be accused of fearmongering regarding crime, but Seattle residents might have good reason to be concerned for their safety.
Comcast Ready for Business Fund...
Ilona Lohrey | President and CEO, GSBA

GSBA is closing the disparity gap with Ready for Business Fund

GSBA, Comcast, and other partners are working to address disparities in access to financial resources with the Ready for Business fund.

Medicare open enrollment is here and SHIBA can help!

The SHIBA program – part of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner – is ready to help with your Medicare open enrollment decisions.
Lake Washington Windows...

Choosing Best Windows for Your Home

Lake Washington Windows and Doors is a local window dealer offering the exclusive Leak Armor installation.
Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Mayor Durkan spurns Seattle council’s winter eviction ban, claims it ‘provides no relief’