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Task force proposes new rent controls

(Published November 18, 2002)

Two public meetings are scheduled for Nov. 20 at which members of the Tenants’ Task Force for Rent Control will present its proposals for strengthening the District’s rent control law.

The meetings will be held at 1 p.m. in the former council chamber at One Judiciary Square, 441 Fourth St. NW, and at 7 p.m. in Room A-5 at Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library, 901 G St. NW.

The task force, made up of renters from six of the city’s eight wards, was formed in the summer of 2001with active involvement of several tenants’ associations.

Three bills drafted by the task force are currently under consideration by the D.C. City Council.

One of the bills would create an Office of the Tenant Advocate, revise current limits on rent increases and stop universities from taking over rental housing. The other two bills address issues relating to advance notification of projected rent increases and tenants’ rights to purchase buildings should the owner choose to sell or transfer ownership.

The task force also is proposing that high rent ceilings be rolled back to the level of actual rents charged and that mechanisms allowing huge rent in-creases be eliminated from existing rental laws.

Copyright 2002, The Common Denominator