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6/9/2021 Rep. Speakman to lead new commission to study Low and Moderate Income Housing Act
Effort aimed at boosting affordable housing development
STATE HOUSE – House Speaker K. Joseph Shekarchi has appointed Rep. June Speakman to lead the special legislative commission to study the Rhode Island Low and Moderate Income Housing Act created through legislation she sponsored earlier this year.

The commission is to study barriers to affordable housing creation and identify ways to help cities and towns meet their obligations under the Low and Moderate Income Housing Act to ensure that at least 10 percent of their housing stock qualifies as affordable.

“Rhode Island has a serious housing crisis regarding both affordability and availability, and very few of our cities and towns have met the 10 percent requirement in the Low and Moderate Income Housing Act. It’s absolutely critical to both the safety and wellbeing of our people and the health of our economy that we look at what must change to meet our affordable housing needs. I’m very eager to get to work with the members of this commission. Rhode Island needs to work quickly to address our critical housing shortage,” said Representative Speakman (D-Dist. 68, Warren, Bristol).

The resolution (2021-H 5953A) sponsored by Representative Speakman to establish the special commission passed the House March 25. It was included in House Speaker Shekarchi’s legislative package to address the housing crisis.

Other members of the commission appointed by Speaker Shekarchi include Rep. Anastasia P. Williams (D-Dist. 9, Providence), who will serve as the commission’s vice chairwoman; Rep. Michael W. Chippendale (R-Dist. 40, Foster, Glocester, Coventry); Rhode Island Foundation President and CEO Neil Steinberg;  ONE Neighborhood Builders President and Executive Director Jennifer Hawkins; Grow Smart Rhode Island Executive Director Scott Wolf; Pawtucket Central Falls Development Corporation Executive Director Linda Weisinger;  Rhode Island Coalition to End Homelessness Executive Director Caitlin Frumerie; Rhode Island Association of Realtors Government Affairs Director David Salvatore;  Rhode Island Builders Vice President David Caldwell; Housing Network of Rhode Island/Community Housing Land Trust of Rhode Island Executive Director Melina Lodge;  Rhode Island Housing Executive Director Carol Ventura; Robert Marshall of the Rhode Island Developmental Disabilities Council; Glocester Town Planner Karen Scott; Providence Department of Planning Director Community Development Emily Freedman; Barrington Tax Assessor Ken Mallette and Jongsung Kim of the Bryant University Department of Economics.

For more information, contact:
Meredyth R. Whitty, Publicist
State House Room 20
Providence, RI 02903
(401) 222-1923