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Oregon Landlords Propose a $25 Million Annual Program to Assist Renters…

Thursday, January 12, 2017

By Rachel Monahan,

Under pressure to respond to the rising cost of housing, the state’s landlord lobby is circulating a proposal to create a $25 million annual Oregon renter assistance program.

…the program would pay a portion of the rent for low-income tenants…

The proposal comes after Oregon House Speaker Tina Kotek announced her support for overturning the state’s ban on rent control and ending “no-cause” evictions…

Economist Joe Cortright gave the landlords’ proposal mixed reviews, calling it a “broader-based way of addressing the affordability issue” than inclusionary zoning, the city’s housing bond or rent control, but one that would, nonetheless, result in higher rents across the market…

We Respond & Your Comments

It’s an ironclad law of economics: If you want more of something, subsidize it. Here it’s rent, which we’ll soon have more of if this program becomes law.

Look at it this way: Iggy’s diner charges $2 for a cheeseburger. For whatever reason, Max stands outside the door and hands a dollar to everyone going in to order a cheeseburger. Iggy, not being a dummy, raises the price to $2.50. Customers still get a burger for $.50 less than before and Iggy gets an extra $.50. What’s not to like?

It’s the same for anything. Subsidize tuition with grants and loans and you get more tuition. Subsidize rent and landlords raise rents to capture some of the extra dough.

As with so many things, Progressives achieve precisely the opposite of their intended result. In this case it’s higher rent.


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