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Advocating for the Homebuilding Industry in Juneau

The Alaska State Home Building Association (ASHBA) and its board of directors spent a few days in Juneau meeting with lawmakers. Conversations with lawmakers are an opportunity to express concerns about the housing market, the cost of doing business and resolving our state’s budget problems.

Here are some bills to watch:

Senate Bill 45 - Requires an unlicensed “owner-builder” who lists or sells a new home within two years after starting construction to disclose they don’t have a contractor’s license.

House Bill 359 - Establish the 2012 International Residential Code (IRC) as the state’s residential building code within the Alaska Housing Finance Corporation. There are no new inspection requirements or enforcement measures beyond any that already exist.

House Bill 142 - Increase the weekly benefit for unemployment from $370 to $510 over the next two years. By increasing unemployment benefits, there will be a corresponding increase in payroll contributions from employers and employees.

House Bill 199 - Establish a permit requirement for certain activities that impact fish habitat. This bill is modeled after a citizen’s initiative to put the question on the ballot at the next statewide election. The proposal to create a new permitting system has pitted the interests of protecting habitat for fish against the concerns of those who develop projects near Alaska’s inland and coastal waterways. If HB199 does not pass this session, this proposal will be on the ballot for a public vote.

These are just some of the main bills we are watching in order to make sure the interests of our members are protected, and that we advocate to improve housing opportunities across the state.

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