Questions asked by Building Ambassadors at the #RenterSummit
At yesterday’s Renter Summit, small groups were asked to prepare questions for the civic leaders on the afternoon Q&A panel. Serving on the panel were House Speaker Frank Chopp, 43rd District Senator Jamie Pedersen, King County Metro Deputy General Manager Victor Obeso, Seattle District 3 Councilmember Kshama Sawant, and Seattle District 4 Councilmember Rob Johnson.
Here are the questions renters submitted:
ON RENTER EMPOWERMENT
Councilmembers Johnson and Sawant: do you support the creation of a City-wide Renter’s Commission?
- What can we do to increase late night transit?
- How can we make transit more accessible to kids and families?
- How are we incorporating safety for vulnerable populations in plans to expand transit?
- Why are we not moving forward with a parking benefit district?
- How do we improve last-leg connections for those who don’t live directly near the main transit lines?
- Can we make transit passes free or low cost for all people, especially workers and students?
- How can we make Metro friendlier, less expensive and easier to use for families, especially single mothers with children?
- Where does the money from zoned [RPZ] parking go?
- How can we better involve women and minority owned contractors in transit development?
- How is King County Metro/Sound Transit working with the City of Seattle and WSDOT to get transit priority improvements on the street?
- What are we waiting on to get buses out of traffic?
- There have been 2 bike fatalities this week. How can we accelerate the creation of protected bike lanes?*
- How much money are we spending on fare collecting and enforcement? Could we better use these funds for transit access and affordability?*
- What is the top priority in Olympia for moving HALA forward? Does Frank Chopp support the MHA-R program in HALA?
- Why do we have zoning that limits building heights and requires parking?
- Can we consider a vacancy tax to disincentivize sitting on overpriced or investment rental units?
- Why are urban villages being forced to absorb all of the City’s growth?
- When can we talk about the dominance of single family housing in Seattle again?
- How can we incentivize the development of unused land?
- What does the City do to protect renters from retaliation by landlords?
- How can we increase accountability for landlords re: ethics and standards?
- Are there non-subsidized solutions?
- When are you going to be brave and bold enough to give inter-sexed people the safe affordable house we deserve?
- Can the Council implement a capital gains tax that eliminates property speculation?
- What are the plans to curb economic displacement due to transit oriented development in Seattle?
- What happens when a tenant no longer qualifies for the Housing and Essential Needs (HEN) Program? What is tenant to do in regards to rent payment?
- What’s being done to prevent landlords from requiring applicants to have incomes 3x the rent?
- Is there a way for renters to apply to new housing before it’s built?
- What new forms of public revenue can be made to build more affordable housing quickly? (e.g. land tax, foreign investment tax, parking tax)*
- How can we cap/change the laws around rent increases with lease renewals?*
- Frank Chopp: We feel a preservation tax exemption would be great for affordability. What would it take to get your support?*
*Question asked of the panel at the #RenterSummit.