Louisiana’s landlord-tenant law is confusing and allows landlords to file for eviction immediately in many situations, throwing families into chaos and potential homelessness. Few rights and a fast-moving eviction process means renters are often fearful of coming forward about health and safety violations or discrimination. SB 120, by Sen. Rick Ward makes important reforms recommended by the non-partisan Louisiana Sate Law Institute.
In 2018, the Louisiana Legislature passed a new law that raises the penalty for landlords who keep security deposits without good reason. The law increases the amount a tenant can receive if they win their case to three times the amount of the stolen deposit.
New Orleans has committed to a number of local solutions including a Smart Housing Mix policy, which would set-aside a percentage of units in new developments as affordable. SB 162 attempts to weaken state laws that provide for smart housing mix policies and jeopardize New Orleans’ plans. New Orleanians have made clear that solving the city’s affordable housing crisis is a top priority. The Louisiana Legislature should oppose SB 162 and let local governments respond to their residents’ needs.