Housing Proposals Taken up in the House

The critical housing omnibus bill (S.226) was approved by the Senate after amending the contractor registry language in hopes of avoiding a gubernatorial veto. While the bill is being reviewed in the House, it has a long road ahead due to the House Natural Resources, Fish, and Wildlife Committee having jurisdiction over the sections related to Act 250 and permitting, while the House General, Housing, and Military Affairs Committee has jurisdiction over housing programs. Additional complications arise from this bill having overlapping language with two other bills under consideration in these committees. 

The House Natural Resources, Fish, and Wildlife Committee also took testimony on the Senate passed S.234, which would make changes to Act 250 to increase housing opportunities in village centers and downtowns. The bill also includes more contested provisions around the creation of a road rule which would trigger Act 250 for new development that create roads or driveways over 800 feet each or 2,000 feet combined. The House General, Housing, and Military Affairs Committees continued to take testimony on S.210, which would create a registry of rental units and program language and funding for the Vermont Rental Housing Incentive Program which would provide $20 million for rental housing rehabilitation and accessory dwelling units.  These two committees will be working on a path forward to either merge or further break apart the three bills under consideration. The Vermont Chamber will continue to advocate for the programs in each bill which will increase the supply of affordable workforce housing.