Home Act passed in Maryland House but could face more opposition in Senate
Following two nearly complete party-line votes in committee and on the House floor in Annapolis, the 2017 Home Act advanced out of the House of Delegates and over to the State Senate on March 17.
The bill, sponsored by Delegate Steve Lafferty (D-Towson), would make it illegal throughout Maryland to discriminate against renters based on their source of income and is aimed particularly at those using federal Housing Choice Vouchers, commonly known as Section 8.
The bill would apply to rental housing consisting of seven or more contiguous units owned or managed by the same person. It also requires that 15 percent of any such housing be made available for those using housing vouchers to pay their rent.
The Home Act passed through the House Environment and Transportation Committee via a 16-8 vote, with all the committee’s Democrats and just one Republican voting in favor. The lone Republican vote in favor was Del. Robert Flanagan of Howard County, according to state documents.