Sacramento City Council Members who proposed nonbinding tenant-landlord mediation have taken tens of thousands of dollars from anti-renters’-rights interests

In the second half of 2018, Sacramento tenants, landlords and developers were embroiled in a debate over renters’ protections.

In an attempt to placate both sides, city council members Steve Hansen, Eric Guerra and Rick Jennings presented a plan for nonbinding landlord-tenant dispute mediation — a proposal dismissed outright by housing advocates as toothless and insufficient.

In that time, groups fighting against tenants’ rights contributed tens of thousands of dollars to the 2020 campaigns of council members Steve Hansen and Eric Guerra.

Hansen received nearly $20,000 from anti-rent-control interests — some 70% of the total money he took in during that period. Guerra accepted $7,650 from the same interests, or 63% of his total contributions.

Jennings had already successfully defended his seat in a spring 2018 election, but a VOICES: River City examination of his campaign contributions found that he took over $70,000 from anti-rent-control interests — $40,165 from groups who actively fought against tenants’ rights and $30,624 from developers, property managers and others with vested interests in maintaining a rent-control-free Sacramento.

In total, Hansen’s 2020 campaign has accepted over $35,000 from anti-renters’-rights interests — $14,600 from groups publicly fighting it.

Guerra has taken nearly $22,000 in total — $11,650 from groups explicitly fighting renters’ rights. 

As the tenants’ rights battle heats up in the Sacramento region, VOICES: River City will continue to push for transparency in campaign contributions with the Sac Follows the Money 2020 project.

Readers are invited to download contribution spreadsheets at no cost, and are welcome to contact V:RC with updates and edits. New spreadsheets in May will include:

  • Mayor Darrell Steinberg’s 2020 campaign contributions
  • Council Member Angelique Ashby’s 2022 campaign contributions
  • Contributions to pro- and anti- parties in Sacramento’s 2020 rent control ballot initiative

Readers who value the Follow the Money 2020 project can help keep Sacramento transparent with a pledge to VOICES: River City’s Patreon. Download and examine Hansen, Guerra and Jennings‘s spreadsheets on their respective Follow the Money 2020 pages.


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Dave Kempa
Editor at VOICES: River City
Dave Kempa is the founder and editor of VOICES: River City.