Rent control bill on House committee agenda

By Guy Page

A bill giving cities and towns the power to exercise rent control, H.670, will be discussed Friday morning in the House Government Operations Committee of the Vermont House of Representatives.

Sponsored by Reps. Curt McCormack (D-Burlington) and Brian Cina (P-Burlington), H.670 would add rent hike increases to the list of rental housing powers already in municipal control, such as lighting, heat, electricity, health standards and security deposits.

Every bill and report under House committee review this week can be seen here. Other bills of note include:

Joint House Resolution 7, an apology for state-sanctioned and eugenically-inspired sterilization, Tuesday morning in House General, Housing and Military Affairs Committee. Nancy Gallagher, author of “Breeding Better Vermonters: The Eugenics Project in the Green Mountain State,” is scheduled to testify. Her 1999 book outlines how almost 100 years ago Vermont UVM professors and lawmakers conspired to pass and enforce laws causing the forced sterilization of Vermont minorities, including Abenaki Indians and French-Canadians.

Guy Page

H.752, authorizing pharmacists to dispense contraceptives without prescription, sponsored by UVM Associate Professor of Medicine and practicing physician Dr. George Till (D-Underhill); and, H.663 (lead sponsor Frances McFaun, R-Barre Town), expanding access to contraceptives, including public school students as young as 12; both bills Wednesday morning in Human Services.

A Vermont Daily Chronicle news story on H.663 last week elicited this comment from Sharon Toborg, Vermont Right to Life Policy Analyst: “This bill would in fact mandate that all over-the counter contraceptives — included the ultra-high hormone morning after pill — be available to all secondary school students. Those students could be 12 years old or possibly younger. And nothing in the bill would protect the parent’s right to know.”

H.492, the homeless bill of rights, will receive testimony from retail and business organizations Thursday in House General. Bill sponsor and Committee Chair Tom Stevens has already taken some testimony on H492, including some he termed “cranky” in a brief State House cafeteria interview. The bill would ensure equal access to housing, employment and state benefits, but also would protect hanging out on the street and panhandling.

H.688, Global Warming Solutions Act (GWSA), Wednesday in House Energy & Technology will be the subject of testimony from the managers of the Massachusetts GWSA. A business advocate in Massachusetts reported the following to Vermont Daily Chronicle about the Bay State’s GWSA, passed in 2008:
“The GWS is used to justify every crazy idea. We need stronger building codes, we need all houses to be solar ready, all to meet the goals, even though after 2020 there are no real goals set until 2050. Bottom line, the GWSA is used to justify everything.”

H.851, requiring “good cause” for job termination, will be discussed Thursday in House General. Many Vermont workers now may be fired “at will” of their employers. This bill would eliminate “at will” and require employers to show “good cause.” Lead sponsor is progressive Democrat Emilie Kornheiser of Brattleboro.

H.464, data collection on police use of force in traffic stops and requiring de-escalation training, will be discussed Thursday in House Gov Ops. Lead sponsor is Cina of Burlington.

H.568, study of legalization of prostitution, will be discussed Tuesday in House Judiciary. Also in Judiciary — H.610, seizure of firearms in cases of domestic violence, and H.579 and H.580, classification of property crimes. If value of property is less than $10,000, it would be a misdemeanor; above that total, a felony.

H.312, limited required captioning in movie theaters, Friday in Human Services.
House Transportation will discuss electric vehicles all week, including reviewing on Friday H.765, expanding EV incentives to electric-powered bicycles.

H.907, pet vehicle registration plate, proceeds to benefit Vermont Spay Neuter Incentive Program (VSNIP) and expansion of VSNIP to cover rabbits, Thursday in House Transportation.

S.54, Commercial Cannabis – House Ways & Means will take up the controversial ‘tax and regulate’ marijuana bill Tuesday afternoon. Ways and Means typically addresses the amount of the tax rate, and who will collect it.

Read more of Guy Page’s reports at the Vermont Daily Chronicle.

Image courtesy of TNR

7 thoughts on “Rent control bill on House committee agenda

  1. I’m not convinced the P/D’s in Montpelier are adequately equipped to discuss any ‘Bill of Rights’, since they have so many problems understanding the original ratified in 1791.

    As varied groups are granted additional rights, above those prescribed by our Constitution, left out of the discussion is mention of the certain duties owed to society by the individuals of those groups.

    Rights involve Obligations – the only obligations I see in reading H.492 are on the rest of society and none on the homeless.

  2. Just check out the above list of nonsense, the state is overtaxed, $4.5B in unfunded
    liabilities and our ” brain trust ” in Montpelier put together this list……….Idiots.

    Please, people, vote these fools out before it’s too late for the state !!

  3. Rising rents are a didect result of cause and effect. The Dems & company keep spending forcing taxes to rise thus forcing land lords to raise rent to pay the taxes. Round and round we go. Reduce spending allowing for reduction of property taxes and landlords would not be forced to raise rents. It’s not complicated. Unfortunately, most of these clowns have never heard of Economics 101 much less having studied it.

    • Raising Rents come from Gov’t actions. New apartments buildings are required to be the most expensive possible. 3 bedroom ranches on a small lot are forbidden.
      Inspectors always blame the EVIL LANDLORD for everything, and the abusive tenant for nothing. I have heard stories, as a former apartment owner, of landlords and inspector going thru an apartment, fixing as they go, to have the tenant go behind them smashing the new electric outlet covers
      Our small apartments were built before stupid permits and political perfection, and rented for from $375 to $750 a month in 1995. I have no idea what rents there are today, but I understand that most of the apartments are now Section 8 . Many former tenants have thanked me, and my late parents, as they moved directly into owned homes from the savings.

      And now every landlord is considered EVIL

      The costs of the pretty and perfect apartments being the only thing allowed to be built are of course $2000 and $3000., a truly Ridiculous situation.

      The families FIRST legal eviction was bad enough to drive us out of the business.

    • These problems are caused by government. Or government more expenses. This just gets passed down to the tenants.

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