The “short” session of the legislature begins this coming Monday, February 1st, 2016 and will be in session for 30 days. The constitutional amendment passed by Oregonians intended for the “short” session to take up necessary budget emergencies, rebalance spending and to make needed technical fixes to bills passed in the last legislative session. You would not know that this is the “short” session from the list of legislative proposals percolating in Salem. This third “short” session in Oregon history has strayed a long way from the original intent. In essence Oregon now has annual Legislative sessions.
This will be a legislative session with a number of very controversial issues – minimum wage, taxes and housing. For the past six months many Portland area Legislators and the media have focused on the “housing crisis” in Portland. Since Labor Day MHCO has been aggressively working with Oregon Legislators to help them understand that manufactured housing communities in Oregon are not part of the “Portland housing crisis”.
MHCO has been specifically concerned about losing, weakening or tampering of the state pre-emption on rent control. Our number one priority this session is to protect this pre-emption. At thisthere time it appears Legislators accepted the bulk of MHCO’s arguments to leave the manufactured housing industry alone. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said about the apartment rental industry – they are definitely in the cross hairs of several hostile proposals.
Thank you to everyone who took the time to meet with Legislators and write e-mails and letters. Between our political action committee (PARKPAC), personal meetings, letters and e-mails we were able to minimize the damage this session posses to our industry. We are not out of the woods until the next 30 days are over – there is still a lot of work to be done - but we appear to be off to a better start than we expected.
So, here is the list of the “Good, Bad and Ugly” – there is not a lot of “good”. These are the legislative proposals MHCO will be monitoring over the next 30 days.
HB 4001 - Modifies conditions under which landlord may terminate month-to-month tenancy after first year of occupancy. Requires landlord to pay tenant relocation expenses under certain circumstances. Creates presumption of retaliation in actions between landlord and tenant commenced within six months of certain actions by tenant. Requires landlord to provide 90-day notice for rent increase. Prohibits rent increase during first year of occupancy of month-to-month tenancy.
Permits local government to adopt land use regulations or functional plan provisions, or impose conditions for approval of permits, that effectively establish below-market sales or rental price for up to 30 percent of new residential development or that limit sale or rental to class or group of purchasers or renters in exchange for one or more developer incentives.
Permits local government to waive state or local building and zoning codes during state of emergency or upon finding rental vacancy of four percent or less.
MHCO Note: This is the bill we have been most concerned. For the most part manufactured home communities will not be impacted. MHCO is working on amendments to this bill that would clarify that manufactured home communities are exempted – such as in the area of “no cause” evictions.
HB 4054 - Increases Oregon minimum wage rate in graduated steps to $13.50 per hour by 2019. Repeals state preemption of local minimum wage requirements.
HB 4079 - Directs Land Conservation and Development Commission to establish pilot program in which local governments may site and develop affordable housing.
HB 4090 - Prohibits declaration or bylaws of planned community or condominium from requiring owners to water or irrigate lawns, gardens or other landscaped areas.
HB 4143 - Lengthens required notice periods for certain rent increases and termination of certain periodic tenancies.
SB 1532 - Establishes tiered system for determination of minimum wage based on size and geographic location of employer. Suspends annual inflation adjustment for minimum wage rate until 2020. Establishes Wage Enforcement Fund. Creates Minimum Wage Advisory Committee.
Repeals state preemption of local minimum wage requirements.
SB 1533 – (Inclusionary Zoning) Permits local governments to adopt land use regulations or functional plan provisions, or impose conditions for approval of permits, that effectively establish sales or rental price for up to 30 percent of new residential development or limit sales or rental purchase to class or group of purchasers or renters in exchange for one or more developer incentives.
MHCO Note: This is another bill that MHCO will watch closely since it deals with pre-emptions. Our concern is any change that alters the state’s rent control pre-emption. Inclusionary zoning can take the form of requiring MHC's to remain MHC's forever or even requiring that a MHC be 55 plus community. We will be looking for any of these hostile changes.
SB 1548 - Authorizes local governments to expedite inclusion within urban growth boundary of land dedicated to needed housing.
SB 1575 - Directs Land Conservation and Development Commission to encourage local governments to dedicate land for affordable housing. Authorizes commission to establish process to expedite inclusion within urban growth boundary of land dedicated to affordable housing.
Permits local government to require developers to allocate up to 10 percent of housing units in new multiunit developments for affordable housing. Designates housing development projects com- plying with local government inclusionary zoning requirement as expedited land division. Requires local governments to prepare housing cost impact statements upon consideration of certain legislative actions.
Permits Metro to designate up to five subregions for consideration for urban growth boundary expansion.
Creates income tax credit for development of affordable housing.
Ends moratorium on local governments’ imposing construction taxes.
Creates new authority for local government, local service district and special government body to impose construction taxes, at rate not exceeding $0.50 per square foot, on improvements to residential, commercial and industrial real property that result in new structure or additional square footage in existing structure, including remodeling that adds living space. Requires local government, local service district and special government body to transfer construction excise tax revenue to Housing and Community Services Department Revolving Account for distribution by department to local government, local service district or special government body and certain programs for home ownership, rental assistance and affordable housing.