Thursday, January 15, 2009

Renters seek help with deposits, leases and heat

Community News Service
UM School of Journalism

HELENA – Montana renters are asking lawmakers for help against landlords who unfairly withhold security deposits, fail to provide copies of leases and don't turn up the heat.

Such complaints moved Rep. Deborah Kottel, D-Great Falls (pictured), to introduce two bills, House bills 188 and 189, which came before the House Business and Labor Committee Thursday.

House Bill 188, would grant greater damages to renters who successfully sue landlords who wrongfully withhold security deposits. The bill would allow damages of three times the amount of the deposit. Current law limits damages to legal costs and the amount of the deposit. -MORE-

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