The Senate Economic Development Committee finished reviewing changes to S.100 on Friday morning and brought the bill to the Senate floor for a vote. Funding was still pulled out and included in the budget. Currently it appears fairly significant (over $200M according to the Committee of Conference report) but the Governor is expected to veto the budget bill so things could change.
The Committee returned on Friday morning to review further changes to S.100. Legislative Counsel Walked them through a summary of the bill. The effective dates had been changed in several sections and the Committee reviewed these.
Senator Brock commented he was called out early during the last summary and suggested “it might be easier if you just tell what parts I won’t like,” which generated some amusement from the room.
Senator Clarkson noted that the “Eviction Rescue” section was renamed to “Rental Arrears.” The House had also doubled their appropriation but Committee of Conference “reigned it in a bit” she added. The Missing Middle program is also in the budget, but they are now contending with the “contingent upon funding” language the House had added, according to Senator Cummings.
Josh Hanford (Commissioner, DHCD) joined the Committee to explain they will be adding extra staff to provide technical assistance to Towns that request it. Brock was a bit concerned that the allocation falls short because the system is first come first served. Hanford thought that system will avoid that under the proposed program.
Brock motioned to concur with the House version of the bill. Senator McCormick, the perpetual Act 250 warrior, stated that the bill was intending to remove Act 250 protections and was hiding under the guise of a housing bill, he believes it "should have been named properly." The vote was 5-0-0 with McCormick voting with the Committee to concur with the House.
The Senate concurred with the House version of the bill before adjourning on Friday. The bill will now be sent to the Governor of signature.