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2019 Legislative Update - March

By Markee & Associates, Inc.

March is now upon us and the 2019 legislative session is now into its third month. Lawmakers were sworn in on January 14th and the assembly officially convened and started work on the 22nd. This is different than in the past few sessions past as they began right away instead of recessing and beginning in February. This means that adjournment should be sometime on the third or fourth week of June. Between now and then, there is much work to be done as agency budgets need to be set. In addition, there are a set of priorities the majority party has a desire to address including: Cap and Trade, Rent Control, raising new revenue, as well as some miscellaneous environmental and consumer protection bills. By the end of February, one of the major priorities has already passed both chambers and has been signed by the Governor.


SB 608-


Eliminates no-cause eviction standard after the first year of occupancy with 30-day notice and limits annual rent increases by no more than 7% CPI in a 12-month period. The bill was a priority of legislative leadership and has already passed both chamber on party line votes. There are a few exceptions on:


  • New Construction: A landlord may increase the rent above 7% +CPI in a 12-month period if the certificate of occupancy was issued less than 15 years ago.


  • New Tenancy: If the previous tenant vacated the unit voluntarily or their tenancy was otherwise terminated in compliance with other applicable law, the landlord may reset the rent on the new tenancy without limitation.


The Governor signed this bill on February 28th and due to an emergency clause in the bill it is now effective.


HB 2001-


This bill (if passed), would require certain localities over a certain population to allow for the development of at least one type of middle housing (quadplex, triplex, duplex, etc.) per lot in areas zoned for single-family dwellings within their Urban Growth Boundaries. The bill received a hearing in February and many members of the public as well as those representing industry testified. Most arguments against centered around undermining local governments from planning for infrastructure capacity, density and promises made to communities through the zoning process in each municipality. Moving forward, there will be many amendments and one or possibly two more hearings before a vote to decide whether to move the bill out of committee. At this point there are many problems that need to be addressed before that would be possible to happen.


Mortgage Interest Deduction (HB 3349)-


This bill was introduced on the 4th of March and is tentatively set for a hearing in the coming weeks. If passed, HB 3349  would do away with the allowable deduction for a non-principal residence and phase out the allowable deduction for interest for a principal residence based upon income. The revenue generated from this bill would be split up into the Homeownership Assistance Account, General Housing and Emergency Housing Accounts with priority given to children who are homeless or at risk of being homeless. This bill will be heavily contested and we will be sure to keep you in the loop as things change.  




Though the state is currently experiencing near record revenue, due to roll up costs, increased state liability in the cost of Medicaid, as well as a Public Employee Retirement System that still needs to be reformed we are looking again at a budget hole for the 2019-2021 biennium. As of now, the goal is to find a way to raise $2B dollars the bulk of which is likely to go to education. The most likely scenario is to have some sort of tax on business to come up with this money in the form of a gross receipts tax or possible a business activity tax. While there are some in business who are generally supportive, there are also some who are opposed without some serious cost containment measures. At this point, it remains to be seen how this gets done. There will be more developments in the weeks ahead so we will be sure to keep you all apprised as this matter evolves.



Markee & Associates, Inc.

5605 Inland Shores Way N #110

Keizer, Oregon 97303


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