Quincy Councillors Pass Affordable Housing Resolution

By SCOTT JACKSON

City councillors on Monday approved a resolution that asks the Planning Department to look into ways to encourage the creation of affordable housing in Quincy.

“We need to keep Quincy affordable [for] Quincy people,” said Councillor Noel DiBona, who introduced the resolution. “This resolution is an effort to keep more of Quincy affordable.

“There is state and federal money out there for this type of housing. This resolution asks what we can do to make sure the money comes to Quincy to fund housing here. This past October, the Healey-Driscoll administration laid out a $4 billion plan to jumpstart the production of homes and make housing more affordable. I’m asking the Planning Department to take a look at what we can do differently to encourage improvement in our housing stock.”

In his resolution, DiBona wrote that “the city of Quincy is increasingly becoming unaffordable” and the average rent in the city is now $2,700 per month. Housing is considered “affordable” when the tenant or homeowner pays no more than 30 percent of their gross income towards housing costs, he wrote, and, at $2,700 per month, Quincy is unaffordable to anyone making less than $100,000 a year.

Housing affordability impacts “not just the poor,” DiBona added, “but also the working class families of Quincy” and the city “has been and should remain a community affordable to all, including firefighters, police officers, teachers and other blue-collar workers.”

To that end, the resolution asks that the Planning Department review current local, state and federal affordable housing programs “to determine what if any impediments exist to the creation of affordable housing in Quincy and what if any local changes can be made to encourage affordable housing” in the city.

Areas of review, DiBona added, should include, but not be limited to, the city providing administrative assistance to income qualification and verification requirments, waiver of municipal fees, and the Affordable Housing Trust Fund funding the purchase of affordable deed restrictions to existing individual condominium units.

DiBona’s resolution was approved in an 8-0 vote on Monday – Ward 6 Councillor William Harris was not present at the meeting – and referred to the council’s oversight and housing committees.

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