Solution for Affordable Housing: Develop new affordable housing by improving the 421-a tax benefit.Submitted by admin on Sun, 02/05/2012 - 1:01pm
The 421-a tax break costs our City budget almost half a billion dollars a year just to subsidize luxury development. An analysis by the Pratt Center for Community Development analyzed over fifty condos slated to receive the 421-a tax credit and found that of the over 6,100 units created, not one was affordable with a price lower than $350,000, with most priced above $600,000 and some exceeding $2 million, for lifetime costs exceeding another half billion dollars. We should adopt the reforms to 421-a proposed by “Housing Here and Now” and its coalition of hundreds of community and advocacy groups by defining affordable housing in the context of the neighborhood, creating permanently affordable units on-site, with the requirement that all workers be paid prevailing wage. We should also consider transitioning from a geographic exclusion zone that requires an affordable housing component to a more organic community related index that would trigger affordable housing for any luxury construction.