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Roberts’ affordable housing bill wins overwhelming, bipartisan support in Colorado House

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April 26, 2019, 12:04 pm

An affordable housing bill RealVail.com first reported on for the Vail Daily earlier this week – sponsored by Avon Democrat Dylan Roberts – passed with overwhelming support in the Colorado House on Friday, winning approval by a 45-18 margin.

State Rep. Dylan Roberts, D-Eagle
State Rep. Dylan Roberts, D-Avon

HB 1322, or the Expand Affordable Housing Supply bill, won the support of five Republicans – a rarity in a rapidly waning legislative session that’s seen a larger number of top Democratic priorities passed with the party’s new but narrow majority in the Senate. Dems also increased their margin in the House last November and retained the governor’s mansion.

Roberts’ affordable housing funding bill, which would be comprised of unclaimed money the state treasurer unsuccessfully tries to return to taxpayers, is now headed to the Senate, where bills are so backlogged the upper chamber is likely going to work over the weekend for the first time in a decade. The session officially wraps up on Friday, May 3.

Here’s a Thursday press release from the Colorado Democrats on preliminary approval of two housing bills (HB 1322 now has full and formal approval):

Colorado House Passes Two Housing Bills 

(Apr. 25) – The House gave preliminary approval to two bills that would expand the supply of affordable housing and hold landlords accountable. 

HB19-1322, sponsored by Rep. Dylan Roberts, D-Avon, and Rep Perry Will, R-New Castle, will expand funding for affordable housing statewide. Under this bill, money will come from the State Treasurer from the Unclaimed Property Trust Fund and be deposited into the Housing Development Grant Fund to supplement existing money. 

“This a responsible way to support affordable housing without raising taxes. It allows local communities to decide what is best for them,” said Rep. Roberts. “Housing is one of the most important issues across the state and this bill specifically points out our rural communities who need help and ensures the state is a strong partner in the effort to support affordable housing projects.”

The bill was approved on voice-vote and a recorded vote will be taken at a later date. 

The House also approved Rep. Leslie Herod’s bill that establishes duties for landlords and tenants in addressing the presence of bed bugs. 

“Bed bugs are harmful. They disrupt our lives in profound ways, threatening the health and well-being of our families,” said Rep. Herod, D-Denver.“This bill will ensure that landlords inspect and treat bed bug infestations quickly, so that people can resume their lives.” 

Under HB19-1328, tenants must promptly notify their landlord when they know or reasonably suspect the presence of bed bugs. Not more than 96 hours after receiving notice, a landlord must obtain an inspection by a qualified inspector and treat the bed bugs in that unit and any adjacent units also affected. 

The bill was approved on voice-vote and a recorded vote will be taken at a later date. 

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