By Bill Hendrickson
To Evict or Not to Evict? Why Is That Even a Question?
The clock is ticking for Ramona Sierra, 90, and Suzanna Bermudez, 65, who are bracing for eviction from their rent-controlled, one-bedroom bungalows in a five-unit complex at 4542-4544 Eagle Rock Boulevard.
On May 22, the City Planning Department imposed a 45-day delay in an application by the bungalows’ owner to subdivide the property into separate dwellings. If and when the application proceeds, the owner, Randy Stevenson of Allegro Capital Partners LLC, would be allowed under state law to begin eviction proceedings.
Community activists and staff at Council District 14 have been searching for ways to avert the evictions. In response to questions by the Boulevard Sentinel on June 26, Rick Coca, a spokesperson for CD 14 Councilmember José Huizar said that the district office “will continue to advocate on behalf of these seniors in whatever way we can and by any means at our disposal.”
Sierra has lived in her bungalow for 40 years. Bermudez and her husband, who are both disabled, have lived in their bungalow for seven years. If evicted, the law requires that the owner pay each of them $20,000, which is not enough for them to afford comparable housing in Northeast L.A. Sierra is filled with worry.
Bermudez says she stays calm by placing her faith in God to protect her and her 90-year old neighbor.