2020欧洲杯预选赛赛程The proposed amendment would have allowed Massachusetts municipalities to place caps on rent increases. The Massachusetts House of Representatives voted against it, 136-23.
BROCKTON — House lawmakers voted to maintain a ban that prohibits Massachusetts cities and towns from enacting rent control, a once-maligned policy that’s drawn renewed attention from progressives as housing prices skyrocket in the Greater Boston area.
Brockton’s state representatives – Democrats Michelle DuBois, Gerard Cassidy and Claire Cronin – voted in unison against an amendment empowering municipalities to pass their own laws limiting rent increases. DuBois had testified earlier this year in support of a bill capping rent increases at 5 percent per year, but voted against a broader measure last Thursday enabling municipalities to craft their own rent control policies as they see fit.
DuBois did not speak on the House floor during the vote, and could not be reached for comment on Tuesday.
Shortly before the vote, the amendment’s sponsor, Rep. Mike Connolly, a Cambridge Democrat, clarified the legislation would not force any municipalities to adopt rent control, and that owner-occupied buildings with three units or less would be exempt across the state.We can deliver news just like this directly to your inbox. You can sign up for This Just In (a daily 7:30 p.m. newsletter with items we've posted that day), News Alerts (so you don't miss anything important) and more. It's customized to your preferences -- and it'll only take a few seconds.
Yet the amendment, tacked onto an economic development bill authored by another representative, garnered little support from House members, who have made housing affordability a legislative priority in recent years.
2020欧洲杯预选赛赛程Rep. Aaron Michlewitz, chairman of the powerful Ways and Means Committee and a close ally of House Speaker Robert DeLeo, was the only member beside Connolly to discuss rent control on the House floor before Thursday’s vote.
2020欧洲杯预选赛赛程“Some say that rent control drives up prices, others say it leads to disinvestment in properties and lets landlords just sit on properties and not improve them,” the Boston Democrat said. “At the same time, we're talking about gentrification and people's homes. Metro Boston is one of the most expensive markets in the country right now.”
Before urging fellow representatives to vote against the amendment, Michlewitz said the House allocated enough money toward affordable housing last year to create “thousands of units,” and that representatives plan to expand a tax credit that further supports subsidized housing.
He and DeLeo were among the 136 representatives who voted to defeat Connolly’s amendment legalizing rent control. Only 23 voted in favor.
For a time, supporters of rent control thought Massachusetts might join a wave of other states who enacted or expanded rent control laws last year, including California, Oregon and New York. Massachusetts lawmakers had filed a pair of bills seeking to restore the rights of cities and towns to enact rent control, which are barred from doing so today without permission from the state legislature.
Rent control, a mainstay of housing affordability in several of the state’s largest cities for two decades, had been eliminated across the Commonwealth by a ballot question in 1994. The vote split 51 percent to 49 percent despite strong support for rent control in the three communities that still had it: Boston, Brookline and Cambridge. No Massachusetts community has received the legislature’s permission to enact local rent control since then.
The House also voted down an amendment Connolly filed that sought to establish a real estate transfer tax to support affordable housing.
Staff writer Ben Berke can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org