The Village of Great Neck Plaza came one step closer to adopting affordable housing legislation at the Nov. 21 board meeting. The proposed legislation was sent to the Nassau County Planning Commission, a process that could take up to 30 days. In the interim, the hearing remains open for further input from the public and developers.
This proposed legislation is an "inclusionary ordinance" which mandates that affordable housing units be set aside in return for a density bonus for all newly constructed or converted multiple-family apartment buildings of 20,000 square feet or more in the C-2 District.
The legislation calls for all of the affordable housing units to be within the buildings to be constructed or converted to residential use. A percentage (7.5 percent) of the gross floor area is to be set aside for affordable housing units and as an incentive, developers will receive a 20 percent density bonus.
Developers will own the affordable housing apartments and the lease term for these apartments will be 30 years. The Plaza's board of trustees is considering whether to provide the option for the tenant in the affordable unit at "year 30" to purchase the unit at an affordable housing purchase price to be determined.
Rents for these apartments will be set at 30 percent of the adjusted gross income of the eligible person's household. Persons will be eligible if the income of the eligible person's household falls within 40 to 80 percent of Nassau County's median household income, with adjustments for size and periodic updating by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.
Further, under the proposed legislation, eligible persons must not currently possess total assets of any kind (including those held in trust) in excess of $100,000. During the period of three years before the determination of eligibility, such persons shall not have transferred without fair consideration assets in excess of $50,000 in the aggregate.
Eligibility will be based on income and assets for persons in the following categories: at least five consecutive years as an active member of an organization that provides fire or emergency services in the village; at least five consecutive years as an employee of the village; a person under the age of 30 who has maintained his/her primary place of residence in the village for at least 10 years; a person over the age of 65 who has maintained his/her primary place of residence for at least 15 years.
If necessary, a lottery will be held to select tenants if there are more eligible persons of equal priority than available affordable housing units.
Once a decision comes down from the Nassau County Planning Commission, and the mayor and the board of trustees vote to adopt the legislation (as is anticipated), the Great Neck Record will carry a full story and interview with Plaza Mayor Jean Celender, explaining the legislation in much greater detail.