June 29, 2010
TIME TO ADD ONE MORE TOOL TO THE TOOLKIT:
It appears that the General Assembly will not act on S-1, before July 1. That bill already has passed the Senate with overwhelming bipartisan support. Accordingly, on that date, the suspension of the 2.5% fee on non-residential development will end.
In the upcoming weeks, it is anticipated that both the Assembly and Senate will consider and act on the “tools” to assist local governments contain costs. Significant reform to the Fair Housing Act must be one of these tools. With the re-enactment of the commercial fee, a Court decision in the COAH challenges imminent, hundreds of municipalities continue to operate under COAH’s regulations, which everyone now agrees were highly flawed, and costly to municipalities and taxpayers. Further, the COAH regulations have failed to provide adequate affordable housing.
League Executive Director Bill Dressel offered the following statement.
“We’re told that they will ‘blow up’ COAH but will not do so immediately. There is no reason to further frustrate needed reform. Those who have concerns with S-1 should step up with solutions and constructive comments, rather than block needed reform. Meanwhile, the broken COAH process continues. We fail to understand how anyone can say that COAH must be abolished, but that the abolition can wait several more months. This reform is simply too important to wait any longer. The Assembly should make housing reform a priority this summer.”
Contact: Michael Cerra, Sr. Legislative Analyst, (609) 695-3481 ext. 120.