Legislative Update - Coalition Bill Passes Key Legislative Hurdle - Rent Control Discussion is Back!

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Yesterday afternoon the coalition bill (HB 3016) passed out of the House Human Services and Housing Committee late yesterday afternoon on a unanimous vote.  Representative Parrish (R - West Linn) will carry the bill.    I expect the bill to pass out of the House later next week.  This legislation contains language that eliminates the landlords responsibility to pay past due taxes when he or she purchases an abandoned home in their community.  The “past due tax on abandoned homes” is MHCO’s top legislative issue for this legislative session.   After trying to address this issue for the past 12 years we are thrilled that we are finally moving forward on an issue that is important to every community in Oregon.

 

Unfortunately, a possible rent control provision for apartments has become an issue.  HB 2564, referred to the “the inclusionary bill” (Permits local governments to impose conditions on approved permits that effectively establish sales price for up to 30 percent of residential development or limit purchase to class or group of purchasers in exchange for on or more developer incentives).   Phil Querin reviewed the legislation this morning – “It does not deal with “rents” or “rent control.” Rather, it seeks to institute price controls on housing units, or residential building lots or parcels. It reverses the current statute that prohibits price controls.  It would permit up to 30% of housing units to be sold at below-market rates in exchange for spiffs to the developer/buyer.”  There is an on going discussion about whether this is actually a form of rent control that would impact apartments but no manufactured home communities.

 

We do have our own problems with rent control.  I had a conversation with Senator Sara Gelser yesterday after the hearing on HB 3016.  She originally wanted to add rent control to the coalition bill but now wants to set up a task force during the interim to look at rent control in manufactured home communities.  This has always been one of my biggest fears - to have the government - in this case the legislature step into what has over the past 15 years been the role of the landlord-tenant coalition.  She is being encouraged by the residents of “Columbus Greens” a manufactured home community in Albany.

 

Senator Gelser is in the process of drafting this legislation.   MHCO will keep you updated on the status of this legislation as we move through the second half of the 2015 Oregon Legislative Session.

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