Inventory of Affordable Housing Proposals

The tables below outline the status of affordable housing proposals as of August 19. Many were initially filed as standalone bills at the start of the legislative session in January 2019, but were recently reconsidered during each chamber’s debate on larger economic development bills.

While a conference committee negotiates the differences between the house and senate versions of the economic development bills, legislators voted in late July to extend the formal legislative session, and will continue to address persistent and emergent housing issues related to the COVID-19 emergency.

Proposals That Have Received Favorable Floor Actions in Both Branches
PolicyHouse StatusSenate Status
Housing ChoiceSection 15 of the House version of the  Economic Development bill contains Governor Baker’s Housing Choice language; mirrored in Senator Crighton’s Amendment 1 to the Senate version of the Economic Development bill

Amendment 124 (Connolly) was rejected in the House version of the Economic Development bill in Roll Call #232, but would have lowered the voting threshold for inclusionary zoning decisions to a simple majority

H.4262, An Act Relative to Housing Reform (Honan/Vargas Committee Redraft), was reported favorably by the Joint Committee on Housing and referred to the House Committee on Ways & Means on 12/23/19

H.1290, An Act Relative to Housing Production (Honan/Boncore), was reported favorably by the Joint Committee on Housing and referred to HWM on 12/23/19

H.3507, An Act to Promote Housing Choices (Governor Baker), was redrafted by the Joint Committee on Housing (H.4263) and referred to the House Committee on Ways & Means on 12/23/19
Amendment 1 (Crighton) was adopted in the Senate version of the Economic Development bill, which will lower the voting threshold for various local zoning decisions from 2/3 to 1/2, including those related to multi-family housing, accessory dwelling units, mixed-use development, affordable housing near public transit and in mixed-use developments, and inclusionary zoning, among others; sets affordable housing and production goals; protects against frivolous appeals; requires one zone of multi-family housing by right in MBTA communities.

While the House and Senate versions of the economic development bill both contain similar versions of the Governor’s Housing Choice language, only the Senate version would allow inclusionary zoning bylaws to be adopted by a simple majority; additionally, the provision to require multi-family zoning in communities served by the MBTA is only included in the Senate version of the bill 
Local Housing Authority Board Member Elections

Creates a process for electing tenant board members to local housing authorities
Included in Consolidated Amendment “A” in the House version of the Economic Development bill

H.1291, An Act Relative to Local Housing Authority Board Member Elections (Honan), was reported favorably by the Joint Committee on Housing and referred to the House Committee on Ways & Means on 6/5/19
Amendment 50 (Boncore) was adopted in the Senate version of the Economic Development bill

S.777, An Act Relative to Local Housing Authority Board Member Elections (Boncore), was redrafted by Senator Boncore (S.2440) and was passed to be engrossed by the Senate on 12/19; referred to the House Committee on Ways & Means on 12/23
Proposals That Have Received Favorable Floor Action in At Least One Branch
PolicyHouse StatusSenate Status
Tenant Opportunity to Purchase / Right of First Refusal

Creates a local option establishing a tenants’ right of first refusal and outlines a process by which tenants occupying a residential property may purchase it prior to its sale or foreclosure
Amendment 269 (Cullinane) was adopted in Consolidated Amendment “A” in the House version of the Economic Development bill

H.1260, An Act to Guarantee a Tenant’s Right to First Refusal (Cullinane), was reported favorably by the Joint Committee on Housing and referred to the House Committee on Ways & Means on 3/9

H.1256, An Act to Guarantee Tenants’ Right to Purchase (Boldyga) was referred to the Joint Committee on Housing and heard on 12/10/19
Amendment 6 (Crighton) was not adopted in the Senate Economic Development bill

S.786, An Act to Guarantee a Tenant’s Right to First Refusal (Crighton), was reported favorably by the Joint Committee on Housing and referred to the Senate Committee on Ways & Means on 4/6

S.801, An Act Relative to Tenants’ Opportunity to Purchase (Jehlen), accompanied Study Order S.2528 on 2/13
Promoting Housing Opportunity and Mobility through Eviction Sealing (HOMES Act)

Seals all no-fault eviction records. Prevents consumer reporting agencies from using or reporting a sealed eviction record. Allows the court to respond “no record” to a housing or credit application in an inquiry for a sealed record. Prevents minors from being defendants in an eviction case
Amendment 449 (Moran) was not adopted in the House version of the Economic Development bill

H.3566, An Act Promoting Housing Opportunity and Mobility through Eviction Sealing (Moran), was redrafted by the Joint Committee on the Judiciary (H.4934) and referred to the House Committee on Ways & Means on 8/6
Amendment 47 (Boncore) was adopted in the Senate version of the Economic Development bill

S.824, An Act Promoting Housing Opportunity and Mobility through Eviction Sealing (Boncore), was redrafted by the Joint Committee on the Judiciary (H.4934) and referred to the House Committee on Ways & Means on 8/6

S.850, An Act to Protect the Privacy of Children in Eviction Proceedings (Brownsberger) also accompanied the H.4934 redraft referred to the House Committee on Ways & Means on 8/6
Additional Proposals Under Consideration
PolicyHouse StatusSenate Status
Tenant Right to Counsel Pilot Program

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, this would create a right to counsel pilot program in 2 housing courts in each of the 6 housing court divisions
Amendment 82 (Santiago) was not adopted in the House version of the Economic Development billAmendment 175 (DiDomenico) was withdrawn from consideration in the Senate version of the Economic Development bill

S.2785, An Act relative to promoting housing stability and homelenssness prevention through a right to counsel pilot program in response to the COVID-emergency  (DiDomenico), was reported favorably by the Joint Committee on Housing and referred to the Senate Committee on Ways & Means on 7/16




Increasing Resources for Local Housing Authorities

Helps raise capital to preserve the state’s housing authority stock by allowing housing authorities to secure debt against their funds and allows housing authorities to retain proceeds from the sale of their property
Amendment 408 (Elugardo) was withdrawn from consideration in  the House version of the Economic Development bill

H.3562, An Act Enabling Public Housing Authorities to Borrow Against Real Estate Equity of Publicly-Owned Properties (Elugardo), was redrafted by the Joint Committee on Housing (H.4541) and referred to the House Committee on Ways & Means on 3/9

H.1317, An Act Leveraging Additional Resources for Local Housing Authorities (Rogers), was reported favorably by the Joint Committee on Housing and referred to the House Committee on Ways & Means on 6/5/19
Amendment 5 (Crighton) was adopted in the Senate version of the Economic Development bill

S.785, An Act Leveraging Additional Resources for Local Housing Authorities (Crighton), was reported favorably by the Joint Committee on Housing and referred to the Senate Committee on Ways & Means on 6/3/19
Local Option for a Transfer Fee on Real Estate Transactions to Promote Affordable HousingAmendment 34 (Connolly) was rejected in the House version of the Economic Development bill in  Roll Call #230

Amendment 290 (Fernandes) was not adopted in the House version of the Economic Development bill

H.1769, An Act Supporting Affordable Housing with a Local Option for a Fee to be Applied to Certain Real Estate Transactions (Connolly), was reported favorably by the Joint Committee on Municipalities and Regional Government and referred to the House Committee on Steering, Policy and Scheduling on 12/5/19 and placed in the Orders of the Day on 1/13/20

H.2552, An Act Establishing Local Options for Generating Affordable Housing Monies (Malia/Comerford), was referred to the Joint Committee on Revenue. Its reporting deadline was extended to 6/16; no further action has been taken
Amendment 249 (Jehlen) was withdrawn from consideration in the Senate version of the Economic Development bill

Amendment 57 (Cyr) was withdrawn from consideration in the Senate version of the Economic Development bill

S.773, An Act Supporting Affordable Housing with a Local Option for a Fee to be Applied to Certain Real Estate Transactions (Boncore), was reported favorably by the Joint Committee on Housing and referred to the Senate Committee on Rules on 4/6
Local Option for a Property Tax Surcharge for Affordable HousingS.2563, An Act Authorizing a Local Affordable Housing Surcharge (Brownsberger), was reported favorably by the Senate Committee on Revenue and referred to the Senate Committee on Ways & Means on 8/10
City of Boston Inclusionary Development Policy & Linkage Fees

This home rule petition, with the support of the Mayor and Boston City Council, would update Boston’s statutory authority relating to development impact fees, commonly referred to as linkage, and codify the existing IDP program in order to mitigate the impacts of large real estate projects and invest in urgently needed affordable housing and workforce development. This modernization is designed to give Boston the tools and authority to address changes in the housing market and the rising costs of both rent and homeownership.
Amendment 9 (Honan) was not adopted in the House version of the Economic Development bill

H.4115, An Act Authorizing the City of Boston to Limit Buildings According to their use or construction to specified districts (Honan), was referred to the House Committee on Bills in the Third Reading on 1/9; local approval from the City of Boston has been received.
Amendment 96 (Collins) was not adopted in the Senate version of the Economic Development bill
Rent Control

Would provide municipalities with the option to implement rent-stabilizing regulations, just cause eviction protections, stronger condominium conversion and foreclosure protections, anti-displacement zones, and options to help tenant manage the upfront costs of leasing an apartment
Amendment 66 (Connolly) was rejected in the House version of the Economic Development bill in Roll Call #231

H.3924, An Act Enabling Local Options for Tenant Protections (Connolly), was reported favorably by the Joint Committee on Housing and referred to the House Committee on Steering, Policy and Scheduling on 6/4

H.3255, An Act Protecting Vulnerable Tenants from Displacement (Connolly), was referred to the Joint Committee on the Judiciary and heard on 7/16/19
Increasing Affordable Housing Production

The Senate version of the Economic Development bill includes language that sets a goal of building 427,000 new homes by 2040, and for 20% of that housing to be affordable, with 10% dedicated to extremely low-income households.

Amendment 23 (Crighton) was not adopted in the Senate version of the Economic Development bill, but would have increased the cap for low-income housing tax credits to allow for additional production of affordable housing

Amendment 174 (Eldridge) was withdrawn from consideration in the Senate version of the Economic Development bill, but would have required every municipality with more than 5,000 residents to identify land that is suitable for affordable housing development; require the Department of Housing & Community Development to establish a $2M trust fund to help public housing authorities hire additional staff; and would grant public housing authorities the authority to borrow funds

Amendment 269 (Jehlen) was not adopted in the Senate version of the Economic Development bill, but would have required any zoning ordinance or by-law that permits the construction of a building with four or more residential units make at least 20% of those units affordable to individuals or families living at or below 60% of the area median income

S.799, An Act Creating Affordable Housing in Every Community (Eldrige), was referred to the Joint Committee on Housing and accompanied Study Order S.2527 on 2/13
Credit BuildingAmendment 140 (Eldridge) was not adopted in the Senate version of the Economic Development bill, but would have required the Executive Office of Housing & Economic Development to administer a three-year pilot program to record and report timely rent payments of tenants to participating credit bureaus. 

S.798, An Act Relative to Credit Building (Eldridge), was reported favorably by the Joint Committee on Housing and referred to the Senate Committee on Ways & Means on 3/19
Housing Studies



Amendment 3 (Tarr) was adopted in the Senate version of the Economic Development bill in  Roll Call #258 and would direct a study on the impacts of the pandemic on owners of commercial and residential property who rely on rental income to support their mortgage obligations

Amendment 7 (Crighton) was not adopted in the Senate version of the Economic Development bill, but would have created a special commission to study the causes of racial segregation in housing
Eviction Moratorium & Rent Freeze

Bans evictions for nonpayment of rent from the start of the COVID-19 emergency through 12 months following the end of the state of emergency; freezes rents at pre-COVID levels; establishes a fund to help smaller landlords and working-class homeowners.

In response, landlord advocacy groups have proposed a Surety Bond Bill, which would enable housing providers to apply for a surety bond in order to meet their ongoing housing costs while continuing to house renters with a reduced ability to pay rent due to the pandemic.
H.4878, An Act to Guarantee Housing Stability During the COVID-19 Emergency and Recovery (Connolly/Honan), was referred to the Joint Committee on Housing, which held a public hearing on 7/28S.2831, An Act to Guarantee Housing Stability During the COVID-19 Emergency and Recovery (Jehlen), was referred to the Joint Committee on Housing, which held a public hearing on 7/28

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