October 2017 Government Affairs Update
ZONING BATTLE CONTINUES
The battle over the “zoning reform bill” (supported by planners and environmentalists and opposed by the real estate community and municipalities) continues. NAIOP testified at a legislative hearing last week in opposition to S.81 and, along with all of the real estate trade groups in the state, developed a
detailed position paper highlighting our concerns with the bill. NAIOP also testified in opposition to the House version of the bill in May. Both versions would have a negative impact on economic growth and housing production, if passed. They would eliminate the few protections developers possess while increasing costs and barriers to growth. NAIOP has been meeting one on one with lawmakers to educate them on the specifics of the very complex bill. Member advocacy will be needed on this issue as the session draws to a close on July 31.
BROWNFIELDS TAX CREDIT INCLUDED IN HOUSING BOND BILL
At the start of the legislative session, NAIOP filed several bills focused on the Brownfields Tax Credit, including a 5-year extension of the tax credit, which is set to expire this summer. In September, the extension was included in the Housing Bond Bill, which advanced and was reported to the House Committee on Bonding, Capital Expenditures & State Assets. The tax credit extension has broad support given the environmental, economic, and community benefits it provides. Special thanks to Housing Committee Chairs Representative Kevin Honan and Senator Joe Boncore for their leadership on this issue. NAIOP will continue to advocate for passage of this important legislation and an extension of the tax credit as soon as possible.
NAIOP OPPOSING BILL REQUIRING EMPLOYEE ROSTER AT CONSTRUCTION SITES
NAIOP recently submitted comments in opposition to An Act Relative to Transparency in Employee Benefits Reporting in Private Construction (H. 1005 and S. 1019). The bill would require that a roster of employees and independent contractors on a jobsite be publicly posted. It would affect projects with 10 or more residential units or commercial projects of 5000 square feet or more. While the proponents state that the goal is to ensure compliance with workers compensation, it is not written to achieve those goals. Given the extremely fluid nature of a job site, compliance with such a requirement would be nearly impossible.
The legislation would require a certificate of compliance. This would essentially require an additional permit to maintain a construction project, with no mechanism for applications and issuance, and no timeframes. (If, for example, it takes 4 or 8 weeks to get this compliance certificate, but the certificate cannot be obtained until the employees have actually been retained for the job, then a time sensitive job would need to be put on hold while it waits for the certificate. During that time, costs would escalate, project delays would ensue, and workers could go to another project.) For these reasons, NAIOP will continue to oppose this legislation.
NAIOP GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS ADVOCACY: LEARN MORE, GET INVOLVED
Interested in NAIOP’s government affairs agenda? Check out the Member-Only Top Issues section of the NAIOP web site for issue briefs, comment letters, and additional resources. Would you like to get involved in shaping NAIOP’s advocacy efforts? We value your input! NAIOP’s government affairs committees are a great way to stay informed on the important issues affecting the industry. Due to security restrictions, you must RSVP to attend any upcoming meetings. New members are welcome (and encouraged)! Contact Tamara Small, Senior Vice President of Government Affairs, at (781) 453-6900 ext. 5 for more information.