The latest update is that the State is now trying to take back the trust funds from the town. But still questions remain. What can towns do in response? What procedures have been set in place? What will the recourse be if towns don’t respond by returning the funds?
In a July 24, 2012 blog post, the Fair Share Housing Center reports that the Governor’s office has sent out letters to local mayors that indicate how much the State will take from their Municipal Housing Trust Fund. But what the letters are not clear on is how the amount to take (and not to take) was determined.
An August 13, 2012 deadline has been set and mayors have until then to either accept the demand and send in their money or dispute the amount with explanation. There is no further direction about what the next steps will be after that date.
“It’s the ultimate black box,” Fair Share Housing Center Staff Attorney Adam Gordon said. “Governor Christie expects New Jersey’s mayors to mail in checks for millions of dollars to the state government with no explanation of how the amounts were calculated. Last night, he sent out hundreds of letters to New Jersey towns – and not one of them explains how it arrived at the conclusions that either no money, hundreds of thousands, or millions of dollars are due.”