Breaking his silence on the issue, St Paul’s Mayor Melvin Carter announced Tuesday that he would vote “yes” on a ballot question that would impose some of the strictest limits in the country on annual rent increases for residential tenants. However, he also indicated some hesitation in accepting the proposal in writing.
“I am voting ‘yes’ for fare stabilization. Not because the policy draft is flawed – we can and should improve it quickly – but because it is a start,” Carter said in his personal A post shared on a social media account said the post was published an hour before the start of the evening’s candidate forum organized and televised by the St. Paul Neighborhood Network and included several of their seven challengers. were involved.
Under pressure from the media in recent weeks, the mayor previously indicated through his campaign spokesmen that he was still studying the November 2 ballot question.
“One of the challenges of policy making by referendum is that we lock in the first draft,” Carter said during the live candidate forum. “I believe there are concerns regarding potential new housing launches, at a time when our population is growing so rapidly.” But he said the city owes those homeless individuals who were put to death last winter to prioritize and then fix housing solutions.
His support puts him in the camp opposite Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey, who in August vetoed one of two ballot questions related to rent controls as well as the St. Paul Area Chamber of Commerce.
The St. Paul Ballot Initiative will increase residential rents in St. Paul by 3 percent annually. Proponents say the ordinance – which would apply to all rental units regardless of old or new construction – would allay concerns about the disparate consequences associated with rent limits in other cities, while opponents fear the investor twin Give a wide berth to the cities and cut them off. New housing supply.
After awaiting initial discussions, the St. Paul Area Chamber issued a public statement Tuesday urging St. Paul voters to vote “no” on the “Fare Stabilization” initiative next month.
“On the face of it, fare control seems easy. Logical too. Until you scratch the surface,” wrote B. Kyle, president of the St. Paul Area Chamber, in a blog post. “And then you should be concerned. …Nowhere in the world is there such an ordinance. Because it doesn’t work.”
Across the political divide, the “Keep St. Paul Home” campaign is circulating a new flyer featuring State Sen. Erin Murphy, DFL-St. Paul, fully supports the “yes” vote on the same question.
“We all need, want and deserve a safe place to live. … We need more (housing) investment, but as we fight for it, rent stabilization. Rent in St. Paul would create predictable, manageable housing costs for those taking in,” Murphy said in the campaign flyer.
Despite Carter’s promise to “make it better, quicker”, there is some question as to how much and how quickly a ballot initiative approved by a citywide vote by the city council can be revised.
The City Charter indicates that “any ordinance adopted on the initiative by voters … shall not be repealed within one year after its approval.”
In addition to the St. Paul Area Chamber, the Sensible Housing Ballot Committee is made up of the Minnesota Multi Housing Association, the Minneapolis Regional Chamber, Minneapolis Area Realtors, the St. Paul Area Association of Realtors, Minnesota Realtors, the Minneapolis Downtown Council and the Minneapolis Regional Chamber. The two largest home building associations in the state – North Central State Carpenters and International Union of Operating Engineers Local 49.
Paul’s Home and its sister effort in Minneapolis is supported by the Alliance, the Frogtown Neighborhood Association, the Housing Justice Center, Jewish Community Action, Southeast Community Organization, West Side Community Organization, TakeAction Minnesota, and other groups.
At least four members of St Paul’s city council have opposed the ballot initiative, as did the majority of the eight mayoral candidates on the November 2 ballot.