Lawmakers address lack of action on skyrocketing rent

“My colleagues are unwilling to move legislature about this issue”
KMSB News 9-10 p.m. recurring
Published: Feb. 18, 2022 at 4:05 PM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Many at home are still affected by the skyrocketing price of rent across southern Arizona. So we asked lawmakers about what they’re doing to reverse the rent rise.

“If you’re trying to find an apartment right now in Tucson, it is basically impossible,” said Representative Daniel Hernandez.

So, what’s being done to bring rate relief? The answer, according to some state representatives, is not much.

Right now, House Bill 2401, which would allow local government across the state to impose some rent control, is dead.

“It’s immensely daunting, the task that were tackling,” said Representative Christian Solorio.

Solorio is the main sponsor on 2401, the bill had support from multiple democrats but no republicans..

“A lot of that had to do with me being new to this building and establishing those relationships is something I’m working on,” said Representative Solorio.

Multiple republican legislators did not respond to requests for comment.

Solorio is hopeful the bill will be heard next session but says it will likely need to be turned into a package, including new building opportunities to please Republicans.

But, next year isn’t good enough for many frustrated Arizonans facing evictions.

Something Representative Hernandez says he is well aware of. But, he says rent control as proposed by bill 2401 is not the long term solution.

“The long-term solution is let’s create more housing,” Said Representative Hernandez.

And that doesn’t happen overnight.

“The immediate solution is not there right now and that’s because my colleagues in the legislature are unwilling to move legislature about this issue,” said Republican Hernandez.

He says right now there are about 25 representatives ready to get to work, but they need 31 in the house and more in the senate. So what needs to happen to make lawmakers pay attention to rent frustrations?

“Right now we’re not having enough people reach out to lawmakers and say you have to act, you cant wait,” said Representative Hernandez.

If you need immediate assistance, click here. If you need any additional help, Representative Hernandez says, you can also reach out to your local legislators office.

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