Berland, Edwards On Affordable Housing Law

Councilwoman Tracey A. Edwards and Councilwoman Susan A. Berland co-sponsor a resolution to amend the Affordable Housing Law creating rental opportunities for a young workforce and providing first-time home buyers assistance

Councilwoman Tracey A. Edwards and Councilwoman Susan A. Berland are proposing an amendment to the Town’s Affordable Housing Law that will create opportunities for millennials and also help first time homebuyers. The town board has long promoted the creation of affordable housing whenever rezoning of property results in an increase in density. The goal of this amendment increases opportunities for affordable housing for a young workforce looking to rent any newly constructed apartments and young families looking to buy their first home. 

 Councilwoman Edwards states “These changes provide an opportunity for young people to live on their own, close to their family. We want our millennials to stay in Huntington.”

“Apartments over stores need to be affordable to help keep our young people in Huntington,” said Councilwoman Susan A. Berland. “This amendment would require developers building five or more units of apartments over stores to simultaneously build an affordable unit. Plans for less than five units would require payment into the affordable housing trust. These affordable opportunities must be provided in the C-6 zone.”

 

There are four major components: 

1) This amendment incorporates state mandated language from the Long Island Workforce Housing Act which states where five or more residential units are being proposed for construction and the developer requests any type of density bonus or other incentive, NYS law authorizes the Planning Board to require that at least 10% be established as affordable housing on or off site or in lieu thereof, the developer will contribute to the affordable housing trust fund to help first time homebuyers. 

 2) The amendment also changes the law in commercial districts to require those establishing mixed-use buildings with five or more apartments on the second story to construct one affordable unit for every five units that they build. If a developer in a commercial area builds less than 5 units then he or she will have to pay into the Town’s Affordable Housing Trust and Agency Account to help first time home buyers. An amount equal to 2.5% of the amount set forth in §74-21(A)(1) which is the amount a developer would pay if he got a density bonus as a result of a rezone. The prices to sell, resell and lease apartments over stores will follow the same formula as affordable housing created as a result of rezones, and the financial qualifications of the buyers and renters will also follow established guidelines. 

3) This amendment states that the quality of furnishing, features, location and appearance of an affordable unit must be substantially the same as a market unit. 

4) Lastly, if requested by the CDA, those benefiting from affordable housing will need to file a disclosure statement certifying that the unit is still their main residency, they have not transferred it to another person, or renting a portion of the unit to another person. 

This amendment incorporates the State mandate and also provides greater opportunities for affordable rentals for young people in the downtown areas and assists families with down payment assistance so that they can own their own home to raise a family. 

 

For more information about this resolution or for general information, please contact Councilwoman Tracey Edwards at (631) 351-3317.


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