Chapter 40B

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WHAT IS 40B?

Enacted in 1969, 40B is a state statute, the Comprehensive Permit Law.

Enables local Zoning Boards of Appeals (ZBA) to approve affordable housing developments under flexible rules if at least 25% of units have long-term affordability restrictions.

WHAT IS THE INTENT OF CHAPTER 40B?

In 1969 – recognition that zoning practices play a role in driving up housing costs and inhibiting the broad distribution of affordable housing.

In 2004, the intent of Chapter 40B is to address the shortage of affordable housing statewide by reducing unnecessary barriers created by local zoning and other restrictions.

BENEFITS OF CHAPTER 40B

Increases the supply of low/moderate income housing

Improves regional distribution of low/moderate income housing

Allows a municipality to have town boards and committees work cooperatively and simultaneously with the local ZBA to structure a project with at least 25% affordable units.

WHAT ARE THE BASIC REQUIREMENTS FOR 40B DEVELOPMENTS?

The project must have a Project Eligibility Letter issued by a state or federal subsidy program.

The project developer must have site control

Owner of Records, Purchase & Sale, or Option to Buy

At least 25% of the units in the proposed project must be restricted over time for rental by or sale to households at or below 80% of area median income

Profit is limited: the development entity must be a public agency, a nonprofit organization, or a limited dividend organization.

PROJECT ELIGIBILITY LETTER – WHAT IS IT ?

Request of the developer for subsidy

Notification by developer to DHCD of application for subsidy

Allows 30-day comment period to the subsidizing agency

“Ticket” to file a comprehensive permit

Preliminary approval of the site from the Subsidizing Agency
o MassHousing
o Department of Housing & Community Development
o Federal Home Loan Bank
• New England Fund member banks
• Oversite roles is through MassHousing

WHY ARE THE NOTICE CHANGES NECESSARY?

Allows stakeholders to provide feedback regarding the proposal early in process

Allows the community to obtain technical assistance at the earliest opportunity, so that it may make informed decisions.

Allows the community to designate an individual to informally discuss the project outside the ZBA hearing process.

APPLICATION REQUIREMENT – WHAT SHOULD BE INCLUDED?

Site Approval Letter/Eligibility Letter

Evidence of Site Control

Preliminary Site Development Plans

Site Conditions Report

Preliminary Drawings

Building Tabulation

Subdivision Plan (if applicable)

Utilities Plan

Requested Exemptions