Counties Raise Concerns Over “One Size Fits All” Housing Bill

MACo Policy Associate Alex Butler submitted testimony to the House Environment & Transportation Committee to oppose HB 1406 – Land Use – Development – Middle Housing (Modest Home Choices Act of 2020). This bill would force all counties to arbitrarily amend their comprehensive zoning plans with a “one-size-fits all” approach that will not directly address housing affordability across the state.

From the MACo Testimony:

Some of the biggest affordable housing shortages are in rural jurisdictions where zoning is not the driving factor. Housing costs are on the rise due to continual upgrades in construction requirements such as mandatory sprinklers, certain septic systems that may require “best available” technology, building code enhancements, and energy efficiency enhancements. While these can often lead to efficiencies later, they collectively contribute to the upfront costs of housing.

Amending comprehensive plans are lengthy processes that require community input and significant effort by local jurisdictions.

Follow MACo’s advocacy efforts during the 2020 legislative session on MACo’s Legislative Tracking Database.