2019 Housing Affordability Legislation

Senate Bill 15

What it does

Makes a $10,000,000 appropriation to the NH Housing Finance Authority for deposit in the state’s affordable housing fund. The bill also directs the treasurer to make an annual transfer of $5,000,000 from real estate transfer tax revenue to the affordable housing fund.

Why it’s important

The Affordable Housing Fund provides low-interest loans and grants for the construction, rehabilitation, and/or acquisition of housing affordable to families and individuals with low to moderate incomes, a group which includes many young people. Including an annual funding stream through the Real Estate Transfer Tax helps to keep the fund growing, thus expanding its impact on affordable housing initiatives across the state.

Current status

The bill was passed with minor amendments by the full Senate on March 14. It has not yet been assigned to a House committee.

How you can help

Stay tuned for the date and time of the bill’s public hearing, when you can submit or personally deliver testimony to the House committee to which it is assigned.

Senate Bill 306

What it does

Establishes a Housing Appeals Board within the NH Attorney General’s office.

Why it’s important

The creation of a Housing Appeals Board will help property owners and developers access a more streamlined and cost-efficient appeals process. The length of time an appeal takes, combined with the cost to litigate, causes some developers and property owners to abandon any thought of appeal or to attempt housing development at all. This is especially true with regard to housing on the lower end of the affordability scale, which often has lower profit margins too.

Current status

The bill was passed with minor amendments by the full Senate on March 14 and was referred to the Senate Finance Committee for review.

How you can help

Stay tuned for the date and time of the bill’s public hearing, when you can submit or personally deliver testimony to the House committee to which it is assigned.

Senate Bill 43

What it does

Establishes a commission to study barriers to increased density of land development in New Hampshire.

Why it’s important

Increased housing density helps to lower housing prices by allowing for more housing units on a lot, and by decreasing minimum lot size requirements.

Current status

The bill was passed with minor amendments by the full Senate on January 31. It has not yet been assigned to a House committee.

How you can help

Stay tuned for the date and time of the bill’s public hearing, when you can submit or personally deliver testimony to the House committee to which it is assigned.