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Rental safety recommendations presented to House committee

Posted by: VHFA on February 25, 2010 - 9:56am

sarah carpenterVHFA Executive Director Sarah Carpenter is testifying this morning to the Vermont House General, Housing and Military Affairs Committee on behalf of the Rental Housing Safety & Habitability Committee.

The rental committee was established by Act 176 to make recommendations to the Legislature regarding health and safety issues concerning Vermont's rental housing.

Sarah has chaired the 14-member committee for the past two years.

In its final report, the committee makes nine recommendations pertaining to:

  • Creation of a registry of rental housing
  • Town health orders
  • Inspections/inspectors
  • Creation of minimum rental housing standards
  • Relocation
  • Enforcement
  • Funding
  • Education for landlords and tenants

"One of the primary issues the Committee struggled with was whether an enhanced rental housing safety and habitability program was better operated from the top (state) down or the bottom (communities) up," the report reads.

"The majority of the Committee agreed the most efficient way to operate an effective rental safety program statewide was to start at the community level."

The Committee also recommends the State create an Office of Rental Housing Code Enforcement, with responsibility for overseeing, adopting and supporting enforcement of rental housing codes.

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