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Wednesday, April 17, 2024

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Cape May Readies for Next Round on Affordable Housing

Cape May Readies for Next Round on Affordable Housing

By Vince Conti

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CAPE MAY – With bills in the state Legislature that would restructure affordable housing in New Jersey and the start of Mount Laurel round four in 2025, the city is organizing a task force “to assist the city in complying with its affordable housing obligations.” The task force was formally authorized at a City Council meeting on Tuesday, March 5.

This is a time of change for affordable housing. Since the 1975 Mount Laurel I decision in the case of Southern Burlington County NAACP v. the Township of Mount Laurel, the courts have held that each municipality in the state is responsible for its fair share of affordable housing. In the almost 50 years since that decision, there has been a series of court cases, the establishment of an executive agency, the Council on Affordable Housing, the resumption of court control over the process, and three rounds of setting municipal obligations.

Now bills in Trenton are seeking to abolish the largely defunct COAH and change the way obligations are calculated.

This comes as municipalities are preparing for Mount Laurel round four obligations in 2025, which will set goals for the following 10 years.

In order to continue the city’s efforts toward its third-round obligations and to begin planning for the fourth round, the City Council established the task force.

The membership on the task force includes a member of City Council, the city solicitor, the city manager, the city’s special counsel for affordable housing and the city’s affordable housing planner. All members serve at the pleasure of City Council. The task force will remain in existence until dissolved by the City Council.

Contact the author, Vince Conti, at vconti@cmcherald.com.

Reporter

Vince Conti is a reporter for the Cape May County Herald.

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