E-Alerts & Press Releases

Let the chairs know: Bill to strengthen retaliation protections for tenants needs a vote!

April 4, 2014
 
Please call or email Delegates McIntosh and Niemann and urge them to support SB 800 and its crossfiled bill HB 1108 and let both bills have a vote in the House Environmental Matters Committee.  Contact information and a sample email are below.
 
Amended SB 800, which would strengthen Maryland’s protections for tenants facing retaliation by their landlords, is being held up in the House Environmental Matters Committee (ENV). This bill would allow the Court to look back 12 months instead of 6 months to determine whether the tenant has been retaliated against by his or her landlord. Thirty-nine other states that have retaliation laws have no limit on the “look back” period that the Court may consider, and ENV heard significant testimony this year about the lack of housing security in an increasingly difficult market for tenants. This is one very modest measure to help increase security for tenants and protect them from retaliation. HB 1108 in the House is similar to SB 800 and also needs a vote.  
 
SB 800 passed the Senate on March 20 with a more-than-2/3 majority vote and has been waiting for a vote in ENV since then.   
 
The Chair of ENV, Del. McIntosh, and the Chair of the Housing subcommittee, Del. Niemann, could still bring SB 800 for a vote on Saturday, which means that the bill could still pass before the end of the legislative session on Monday. Presently, however, we understand that SB 800 is not on the ENV voting list, even though we believe we have the votes.
 
Please call and/or email Delegates McIntosh and Niemann and urge them to support SB 800 and its crossfile HB 1108 and let both bills have a vote. Contact information and a sample email are below.
 
Thank you!
 
Matt Hill
 
Public Justice Center attorney  
 
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Delegate Maggie McIntosh, maggie.mcintosh@house.state.md.us 410-841-3990
Delegate Doyle Niemann, doyle.niemann@house.state.md.us 301-858-3326  
 
Dear Delegates McIntosh and Niemann:  
 
Please support and allow a vote on both Amended SB 800 and HB 1108.  Without your support and a vote from ENV on Saturday for SB 800, the bill is most likely dead. 
 
This is a good bill that would strengthen Maryland’s protections for tenants facing retaliation by their landlords by allowing the Court to look back 12 months instead of 6 months to determine whether the tenant is being retaliated against by his or her landlord. As amended by the Senate, this is a very small fix that could help a number of tenants facing retaliation. 
 
Please support and vote on SB 800 and HB 1108 in ENV.  
 
Thank you for your consideration.


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