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4/9/2024 House passes Solomon bill to ease affordable housing development challenges through inclusionary zoning
STATE HOUSE — The House of Representatives today passed legislation introduced by Rep. Joseph J. Solomon Jr. that would ease the financial challenges of development projects by making inclusionary zoning more achievable at the municipal level.

The measure is part of a comprehensive package of bills relating to housing issues that is being promoted by Speaker of the House K. Joseph Shekarchi (D-Dist. 23, Warwick) to address Rhode Island’s housing crisis and expand upon initiatives outlined in his previous legislative efforts.

The bill (2024-H 7948A) provides amendments to the requirements of the inclusionary zoning law for affordable housing development to incorporate feedback from the Rhode Island Chapter of the American Planning Association. Inclusionary zoning is an optional tool for municipalities to require the provision of affordable units in conjunction with the development of market rate units. This legislation does not alter municipal approval requirements.

“The financial challenges that go along with development projects — particularly those with affordable units — can be prohibitive,” said Representative Solomon (D-Dist. 22, Warwick). “Inclusionary zoning is a valuable tool for cities and towns to promote the provision of affordable units along with market-rate developments. This bill is a crucial step in assuring equitable access to affordable housing for Rhode Islanders.”

The Rhode Island League of Cities and Town testified in favor of the legislation, saying that it “represents a thoughtful and pragmatic approach to bolstering affordable housing development in Rhode Island.”

The measure now moves to the Senate for consideration.

For more information, contact:
Daniel Trafford, Publicist
State House Room 20
Providence, RI 02903