Legislative Update March 14, 2017

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Legislative Update

Lead paint remediation, 
shoreland protection, condo bills

By Bob Quinn
Government Affairs Director, NH REALTORS®

Here are a few items being explored in the New Hampshire legislature that are of potential interest to the real estate community and being watched closely by your New Hampshire REALTORS government affairs team:

Lead paint remediation funding clears another hurdle

SB 247, which seeks to alter New Hampshire’s lead paint laws, has passed the Senate on a 17-6 vote. The bill still needs to be reviewed by the Senate Finance Committee before it can be sent to the House of Representatives.

NHAR and landlord groups have worked with Senate leaders on SB 247, which would require all 1- and 2-year-old children to undergo blood testing for lead in order to determine their exposure. The bill would also allocate $6 million to a “Remediation of Lead in Water and Rental Housing Fund,” which property owners could apply to replace windows, doors, and other components that pose lead hazard and would reimburse up to 75 percent of the cost. The intent is to remove the lead before it becomes a problem.

The bill has undergone significant changes since it was introduced and NHAR supports passage in its current form.

Shoreland protection revisions and temporary docks

SB 30 would alter the Shoreland Protection Act’s grid and point system and passed the Senate last week (if you want to know about RSA-485b, the Shoreland Water Quality Act, click here). Currently, the Act divides the waterfront buffer into 50- by 50-foot segments and requires a minimum tree/sapling score which must be maintained. SB 30 would shrink the grid into 50- by 25-feet while dropping the tree and sapling score from 50 points to 25 points. The intent is to prevent homeowners from clearing wide swaths of land which could lead to increased runoff.

Meanwhile, SB 119 would allow a temporary seasonal dock to be longer than the current standard – 40 feet in larger lakes, 30 feet in smaller – during drought conditions. The details are still being debated and the Senate is expected to take before the end of the month. NHAR supports allowing longer docks during low-water periods.

Condo bills easily pass the House

Several bills intended to make it easier to acquire condo association documents have passed the House of Representatives.

HB 501 seeks to require that an electronic or paper copy of all meeting minutes be made available to unit owners for at least three years after the date of the meeting. And the board would have to respond to a unit owner’s written request for the minutes within 15 days of receipt of the request.

HB 502 would requires that the association’s financial information be made available to the unit owners 30 days prior to the annual meeting. The bill would also require that owners will have access to all financial information within 15 days of the request. Finally, HB 502 would require the board of directors to make copies of the minutes of all meetings available to the unit owners within 60 days of the meeting or 15 days of the date such minutes are approved by the board, whichever occurs first.

A legislative chart for all bills NHAR is tracking can be found here.

For more information, contact NHAR Government Affairs Director Bob Quinn at 603-225-5549 or bob@nhar.com


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