Council member Charlene Drew Jarvis (D-Ward 4) wants the District to adopt a bill that would require developers of projects costing more than $20 million here to spend an additional 10 percent of their costs on new or rehabilitated housing in the city.
Jarvis' bill would not require that the funds be spent for low- or moderate-income housing and would allow such developers to spend the money in any part of the city.
The bill, modeled partially after a San Francisco regulation, also would allow developers up to 15 years to donate the 10 percent to a special city fund rather than build housing themselves. The bill would apply to new developments that receive construction permits after the measure becomes law, Jarvis said.
Jarvis was scheduled to introduce the measure last night along with three other bills that would provide a special exemption from rent control, limit some mortgage foreclosures and provide a new tax deduction for businesses operating at a loss.
The rent control measure would exempt from the law properties that have been vacant for two years as long as 70 percent of the residents within a one-block area of the affected properties sign a petition asking for the exemption for the owner.
Jarvis said the measure "would allow residents to choose between maintaining rent control or their property values." Jarvis said neighborhood property values are dragged down by unsightly homes and apartments that are vacant because owners cannot charge enough rent to cover the cost of renovation.
Jarvis, chairman of the housing and economic development committee, said the bill would not apply to newly vacant properties, but that the council would have to determine a specific cutoff date.
A third Jarvis bill would bar lending firms from "accelerating" mortgages that are in default, a practice that requires borrowers in default to pay off the entire amount of a loan rather than simply the amount past due.
Jarvis' bill would save the mortgage if a borrower, until one hour before the actual foreclosure, pays the past due amount plus administrative fees and late charges.
Jarvis said under current law, lenders have the option of writing acceleration clauses in their contracts.
The Jarvis tax measure would allow corporations to deduct net operating losses from their District income taxes, a provision similar to federal laws and those of the states of Maryland and Virginia. Jarvis said she could not estimate how much the measure would cost the city treasury.
GAY POLITICS--The third annual Gertrude Stein Democratic Club dinner last week drew a large crowd of city officials and council members, a clear indication of the gay and lesbian communities' political strength in the District.
Ten of the 13 council members attended the $50-a-person banquet at the Hyatt Regency, along with a smattering of School Board members, including president R. David Eaton, who gave the benediction.
Mayor Marion Barry, who was in Chicago on business, was represented by community liaison director Anita Bonds and several other administration officials.
Richard Maulsby, a Barry appointee and head of the banquet committee, joked that Barry wasn't really in Chicago. "He's in Pittsburgh, hoping against hope an unemployed steel worker will come up to him so he can offer him a job as head of the Board of Elections and Ethics."