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The hidden assumption behind S.one hundred, the Reasonably priced Housing Act, is that industry forces can repair the housing dilemma in Vermont. In other words, the root trigger of Vermont’s housing shortage is government red tape and regulations — like Act 250 and water good quality guidelines. Gut these, the theory goes, and developers will create all the very affordable housing we need to have.

But developers can make a lot a lot more funds developing McMansions for the wealthy than very affordable housing for operating Vermonters, which is why there are projects like Spear Meadows, Kwiniaska Ridge, and O’Brien Farms. It would take altruism for developers to forgo the income they can make on developments like these.

How altruistic are Vermont’s true estate barons? You could possibly ask Ali Amrani, owner of the Moroccan Cafe in Burlington’s North Finish, what he thinks about the generosity and neighborhood spirit of prominent landlord and developer Jacob Hinsdale. Hinsdale Properties announced it will be raising the restaurant’s rent 150% in July, forcing Amrani to close his doors.

Hinsdale Properties is but one particular instance of the sort of business enterprise that will do really properly if S.one hundred is passed. It is worth noting that the committee that launched the bill is chaired by none other than Sen. Kesha Ram-Hinsdale, Jacob Hinsdale’s wife. 

According to the Vermont Code of Ethics, Sen. Ram-Hinsdale need to have recused herself on this concern, rather than lead the charge. 

S.one hundred is just business enterprise-as-usual disguised as social justice. As an alternative of deregulation, we need to contemplate limits on brief-term rentals and second (and third) houses, and perhaps even rent manage. 

Suzanna Jones 


By Editor

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