N.J. may appeal affordable housing ruling

This appeared in the Bergen Record on Saturday. Will the state appeal or review the rules? What impact is this having on the development of supportive housing?

N.J. may appeal affordable housing ruling
Saturday, January 27, 2007

By SONI SANGHA
STAFF WRITER

The League of Municipalities wants the state to appeal a court ruling that nullified the formula used for building affordable housing in New Jersey.

State officials, however, did not indicate whether they would indeed mount a challenge to Thursday’s appellate court ruling, saying only that lawyers are reviewing the decision.

The state has 20 days to notify the court if it intends to appeal the ruling that, if it stands, could force North Jersey towns to provide more housing for low- and moderate-income families.

“If the state does appeal, we plan to [join it],” said William Dressel, executive director of the league, which sent a letter on Friday to each of the state’s 566 municipalities criticizing the decision.

Meanwhile, North Jersey town officials expressed frustration and confusion with the ruling and struggled to figure out how it would affect taxpayers. Towns have collectively paid planners millions of dollars to help them navigate affordable housing formulas, which required that municipalities estimate their level of growth over a 10-year period.

The ruling said the current formula created by the state’s Council on Affordable Housing wrongly eliminated up to 145,000 units. The court gave the state six months to draft a new plan.

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