Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Gov conditionally vetoes S1

Gov. Christie's Conditional Veto
 Gives Towns License to Exclude  

This afternoon, Governor Christie conditionally vetoed the housing legislation that was passed by the Legislature earlier this month.  In doing so, he called on the Legislature to adopt revised legislation that would allow municipalities to completely exclude lower-income households.  His proposed amendments would allow municipalities to determine their housing obligations and would reimpose growth share, a failed system that has been rejected twice by the courts as unconstitutional because it allowed municipalities to avoid their regional low- and moderate-income housing obligations.  
Kevin D. Walsh, Associate Director of Fair Share Housing Center, said, "If the governor's proposed amendments become law, New Jersey's housing policy will be set back four decades.  In New Jersey, most wealthy, job-rich towns do everything they can to keep out regular working folks who are bus drivers, waitresses, and public employees.  The governor has sided with wealthy towns that unreasonably prevent starter homes and apartments from being built.  The legislation he proposed violates the Mount Laurel doctrine, is bad for our economy, and would be rejected by the courts."
The governor's decision today puts him at odds with the business community, which called on him to sign the legislation he conditionally vetoed.  Walsh continued, "Governor Christie has rejected the demands of the business community and sided with discriminatory towns."

A press release from the Governor's Office explaining his reasoning can be found here:

"Fair Share Housing Center, founded in 1975, is based in Cherry Hill. It is the only public interest organization devoted entirely to defending the housing rights of New Jersey's poor through implementing the Mount Laurel doctrine, which requires that each municipality provide its fair share of affordable housing to low- and moderate-income people.  Visit us on the web at http://www.fairsharehousing.org/ ."

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