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May 9, 2013

Re: Affordable Housing, COAH, Municipal Affordable Housing Trust Funds

Dear Mayor:

Today in Trenton, the Commissioner of the Department of Community Affairs (DCA) testified on the DCA’s budget before the Assembly Budget Committee. The Commissioner’s testimony focused on the Department’s budget, its new “Sandy” division and tax relief. However, many of the questions from legislators focused on the affordable housing trust funds.

Questions from Committee Chair, Assemblyman Vincent Prieto and Assemblywoman Bonnie Watson Coleman questioned whether COAH’s attempted seizure of the local trust funds and the agency’s failure to promulgate regulations was consistent with the legislative intent of PL 2008, c. 46.. Assemblywoman Watson-Coleman also asked about the draft regulations that the DCA submitted for publication in the New Jersey Register, which they then withdrew after the Appellate Division overturned the Governor’s abolishment of COAH. The Commissioner maintained the position that the agency was under no obligation to promulgate the regulations and that municipalities had sufficient time and guidance to spend the trust fund dollars.

With the Legislature engaged in this issue, we urge you to reach out to your State Legislators and to the Governor’s Office at 609-292-6000 and express your opposition to the state seizure of the municipal affordable housing trust funds.

We will continue to update you on this issue. For more please see our Dear Mayor letter of May 6 (http://www.njslom.org/letters/2013-0506-coah.html). Questions can be directed to Mike Cerra at mcerra@njslom.com or (609)695-3481 x120.

Very truly yours,

Janice S. Mironov, President,
New Jersey State League of Municipalities,
Mayor, East Windsor Township

William G. Dressel, Jr.
Executive Director

 

 

 

 

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