Gov. Northam signs legislation to reduce Virginia eviction rates

Gov. Northam signs legislation to reduce Virginia eviction rates
Posted at 8:31 AM, Mar 01, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-01 08:31:21-05

RICHMOND, Va. – Gov. Ralph Northam signed multiple measures that are aimed at reducing eviction rates in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

The Governor’s office says that the bills he signed support Northam’s affordable housing priorities, which he set forth in Executive Order Twenty-Five signed in November of 2018. Northam has made expanding access to affordable housing a priority of his administration.

In all, Northam signed seven bills between both the House and Senate in Virginia’s General Assembly.

“Increasing the quality, availability, and affordability of housing in our Commonwealth is critical to ensuring that all Virginians have an equal opportunity to lead healthy and productive lives,” said Governor Northam. “These measures establish important consumer protections, help to improve housing stability for vulnerable populations, and represent a fundamental step forward in addressing Virginia’s disproportionately high eviction rates. I thank the General Assembly for working together to pass these important bills, and I am proud to sign them into law.”

The legislative package includes House Bill 1898, Senate Bill 1445, Senate Bill 1448, Senate Bill 1627, House Bill 1922, House Bill 2054 and Senate Bill 1676.

The bills will help provide additional opportunities for low-income Virginians to submit unpaid rent and fees prior to an eviction judgment, require landlords to provide tenants with mutually-agreed upon written leases and set forth certain provisions that must be included in the written lease, and reduce the timeline for a tenant to receive a hearing in an eviction proceeding and reduce the number of legal actions a landlord may file in court against a tenant.

House Bills 2007 and 2655, Senate Bills 1450 and 1626, and House Bill 1923 also address the issue of eviction reduction and housing security. Governor Northam will act on these bills in the coming weeks, said his office in a statement.

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