Rent Panel Needs Alternate

The city is seeking applicants to fill a landlord-alternate position on the Landlord-Tenant Mediation Board, which mediates rent-increase conflicts.

The alternate, who will receive mediation training, will serve on mediation panels when the three regular landlord representatives of the board are unavailable. Applicants must own or manage residential property in Culver City, but need not live in the city.

The alternate is encouraged to attend the board's monthly public meetings, for which he or she is paid $50 per meeting.

The 8-year-old board consists of three landlord representatives, three tenants, three at-large members who are neither landlords nor tenants and one alternate for each of the categories. Individual disputes are submitted to a panel composed of one representative from each category.

If a tenant requests mediation within 15 days of receiving notice of a rent increase, the landlord must mediate in good faith before raising the rent, said Phyllis Baboolal, housing manager for the city Housing Division of the Community Development Department.

The landlord-alternate slot became vacant when the city council appointed alternate Lee Landman to replace landlord representative Helen Jones, who resigned at the end of her term July 1.

Applications are available at the Culver City Housing Division, 9696 Culver Blvd., Suite 100, 202-5764. They are due July 21.

The City Council will select the alternate, probably by mid-August, Baboolal said.

Tenant representative Gary Davis has been elected chairman of the board, and at-large member Neil Rubenstein has been elected vice-chairman, for one-year terms as of July 1.

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