"We expect the first quarter of next year to
be a busy time for RTO legislation"
Chairman and Founding Partner of
The Washington Group
20% of all
lawmakers are co-sponsoring the Consumer Rental Purchase
Agreement Act. With 82 House and 21 Senate co-sponsors, debate
could begin as early as the first
quarter of 2004. (a complete list of co-sponsors as well as a
complete history of the legislation, dating back to 1985, is
available in RTO.GOV)
The House and Senate will set 2004's agenda
over the next four to six weeks. Passage in the House is
considered likely (HR1701,
last sessions version, was
narrowly passed by the House 215 -
201 with 15 members not voting), but the Senate has never
debated the issue.
Although the Act was introduced in the Senate by
Landrieu (D-LA) in September, 2002 and
referred to the
Housing and Urban Affairs Committee, hearings were never
scheduled by then
Paul Sarbanes (D-MD).
Richard Shelby (R-AL), a Rent to Own industry supporter and
co-sponsor of the Act, took over as Chairman of the
Banking Housing and Urban Affairs Committee when the Republicans took
control of the Senate in 2002.
The Senate may debate the bill, or simply attach
it to some other bill for passage. Either way, action may come
early in 2004.
John Raffaelli, Chairman and Founding Partner of
Washington Group, an industry lobbyist, "We expect the first
quarter of next year to be a busy time for RTO legislation."
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