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TODAY: Call your legislators on housing bill priorities!

Published in Advocacy on February 3, 2020.

Under rules that govern law-making in the State Legislature, state legislative committees have until Wed., Feb. 5 to “report out” a bill from its committee.  If it is not given a “favorable report” by that date, the bill typically “dies” unless it is given an extension.

The Network’s top legislative priorities include Right to Counsel in Evictions, Eviction Record Sealing (HOMES bill), Upstream Homelessness Prevention and Real Estate Transfer Fee for Affordable Housing, among others.

NOW, today or tomorrow, is the time to weigh in with YOUR Senator and Representative to urge them to contact the Committee chairs to report these bills out favorably.

If you want more “quick tips” on calling your legislators, you can find them here. But know you can take fast action with a simple phone call to your legislator’s office to say: “Please contact the appropriate Committee chairs to get these bills out of Committee” and then list the bills (see the priorities hand-out for where there are bill numbers (not all have them).

You can find contact info for your legislators here.

A quick look at the Network priorities will let you know who among our Western MA Legislators are already signed on as co-sponsors. In that case, you want to add a “thank you for your support” to the push to contact the Chairs (keep in mind co-sponsorship does not necessarily mean they are pushing!).

The Network’s priority bills are in the following committees:
Judiciary Committee: Right to Counsel in Evictions and Eviction Record Sealing (HOMES bill) – Senate Chair Jamie Eldridge, House Chair Claire Cronin
Housing Committee: Upstream Homelessness Prevention and one Real Estate Transfer Fee bill – Senate Chair Brendan Crighton, House Chair Kevin Honan
Revenue Committee: Other Real Estate Transfer Fee Bills (consolidated bill-making in process), Senate Chair ADAM HINDS (one of our own!), House Chair Mark Cusack

If you’re on a roll, after calling your own legislators, call the Chairs directly and say: please report out these bills favorably!

Thanks for your action. These bills will make a BIG difference in our effort to prevent and end homelessness in Western Massachusetts – let’s make them happen!

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