"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world.

Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has"

Margaret Mead, Anthropologist
(used with permission)

"If you don't like the news .... go out and make some of your own !!"

Wes "Scoop" Nisker, Newscaster


Government is a slow and tedious process. While it often includes citizen and neighborhood involvement, non-governmental, private organizations have created movements and interesting groups which can create positive change in our cities and towns.

I am fascinated by the way groups are created and how they influence public decision making. This blog merely recognizes them and forwards the description of these groups from their own websites.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Innovative Housing Institute

Location: Nationwide

Website: www.inhousing.org

The Innovative Housing Institute promotes providing quality affordable housing in communities throughout the nation, primarily through the policies and practices known as Inclusionary Housing.

The Innovative Housing Institute offers a great depth of knowledge and experience in the variety of Inclusionary Housing tools and strategies used in different local jurisdictions and states.

Inclusionary Housing, also known as Inclusionary Zoning, calls for a portion of housing units in residential projects to be available for low- and moderate-income households.

Many programs provide developers with "cost offsets" or incentives, such as density bonuses, zoning or design flexibility, parking reductions, fee waivers, or an expedited review process for providing these affordable units. The term inclusionary is used to counter exclusionary practices that require minimum lot sizes and setbacks, effectively preventing affordable housing from being built.

Inclusionary Housing programs are based on a variety of legal frameworks and can be mandatory or voluntary. Affordable units can be provided on-site as part of a mixed-income project or at another location. In some cases, financial contributions in lieu of units can be made to affordable housing funds.

Since the 1970s, more than 300 local governments and numerous states have adopted inclusionary housing programs resulting in the production and preservation of hundreds of thousands of affordable homes and apartments. Adaptable to local conditions, Inclusionary Housing tools have been successfully used in states such as California, Colorado, Illinois, North Carolina, Maryland, Virginia, New Jersey, and Massachusetts. Santa Fe, New Mexico, and Burlington, Vermont, are among cities that have adopted Inclusionary Housing tools.

The success of Inclusionary Housing programs results from private residential activity, so the tool works best in locations with strong real estate markets.

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