Measure requiring new-home warranties looks dead
A measure that would require warranties on new homes appears to be dead this session, with House Speaker Frank Chopp saying the bill needs...
The Associated Press
OLYMPIA — A measure that would require warranties on new homes appears to be dead this session, with House Speaker Frank Chopp saying the bill needs more work.
The Democratic senator who sponsored the measure said that he will keep pushing the bill this session and that Chopp is caving in to the powerful Building Industry Association of Washington (BIAW), which has opposed the measure.
"I can see no other explanation," Sen. Brian Weinstein, D-Mercer Island, said Thursday. "This is outrageous ... I can't believe he would just kill this bill."
Senate Majority Leader Lisa Brown, D-Spokane, said Thursday the Senate would continue advocating for the measure. "I think it's a good piece of legislation," she said.
Chopp, D-Seattle, in an interview suggested lawmakers treat the bill as they did a measure passed in 2004 that dealt with condominium liability. It took two or three years to come to a resolution on that measure, he said.
"I'm suggesting we work through the interim," and come back in the next session or two with a bill that could be passed unanimously, he said.
Chopp did not return a call seeking comment Thursday on Weinstein's accusation that he had capitulated to building interests.
Senate Bill 5550, the so-called Homeowners Bill of Rights measure, passed the Senate 30-19 this month. It passed out of the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday.
If approved, the bill would, starting in July 2008, establish transferable warranties for new homes. The warranties would protect against:
• Defects in materials and workmanship for two years.
• Defects in electrical, plumbing, heating, cooling and ventilating systems for three years.
• Defects resulting from water penetration for five years.
• Structural defects for 10 years.
Associated Press reporter David Ammons contributed to this report.
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