Dozens Of Residents Of Oakland Hotel Told To Move Out

Submitted by News Desk on Wed, 07/09/2008 - 10:00pm
OAKLAND -- About 75 residents of the California Hotel on San Pablo Avenue in West Oakland have received a notice that they must leave by July 15th. The owner of the hotel, Oakland Community Housing, said in the notice to tenants that it can no longer afford to operate the building.

Most of the residents don't have much money and the hotel was one place they could afford. A studio apartment rents for about $500 dollars a month. "I was homeless before I got this place," said Jesse Powell. He's lived at the hotel for six and a half years.

An attorney representing some of the tenants plans to be in court on Friday to ask a judge for a temporary restraining order to stop the owner from shutting off the gas, water, electricity and garbage services.

The tenants rights group "Just Cause Oakland" said it will fight for the residents of the California Hotel. "The tenants will stay. Come Tuesday, we're calling on housing advocates and city officials to support us and keep this place open," said Robbie Clark.

KTVU tried to contact the owner, Oakland Community Housing Incorporated, on Thursday but no one returned those phone calls.

Tenant Leroy Scoggins said a number of health problems have left him disabled and he will be homeless without the hotel. Scoggins lamented, "It would be like a death sentence to me. It really would. I don't have nowhere to go."

Several residents said they suspect the owner wants to upgrade the building to bring in new and higher paying tenants.

A hearing is scheduled for Friday morning in Alameda Superior Court.

Copyright 2008 by All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed