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Summary of Question 2
This proposed law would repeal an existing state law that allows a qualified organization wishing to build government-subsidized housing that includes low- or moderate-income units to apply for a single comprehensive permit from a city or town's zoning board of appeals (ZBA), instead of separate permits from each local agency or official having jurisdiction over any aspect of the proposed housing. The repeal would take effect on January 1, 2011, but would not stop or otherwise affect any proposed housing that had already received both a comprehensive permit and a building permit for at least one unit. Under the existing law, the ZBA holds a public hearing on the application and considers the recommendations of local agencies and officials. The ZBA may grant a comprehensive permit that may include conditions or requirements concerning the height, site plan, size, shape, or building materials of the housing. Persons aggrieved by the ZBA's decision to grant a permit may appeal it to a court. If the ZBA denies the permit or grants it with conditions or requirements that make the housing uneconomic to build or to operate, the applicant may appeal to the state Housing Appeals Committee (HAC). After a hearing, if the HAC rules that the ZBA's denial of a comprehensive permit was unreasonable and not consistent with local needs, the HAC orders the ZBA to issue the permit. If the HAC rules that the ZBA's decision issuing a comprehensive permit with conditions or requirements made the housing uneconomic to build or operate and was not consistent with local needs, the HAC orders the ZBA to modify or remove any such condition or requirement so as to make the proposal no longer uneconomic. The HAC cannot order the ZBA to issue any permit that would allow the housing to fall below minimum safety standards or site plan requirements. If the HAC rules that the ZBA's action was consistent with local needs, the HAC must uphold it even if it made the housing uneconomic. The HAC's decision is subject to review in the courts. A condition or requirement makes housing "uneconomic" if it would prevent a public agency or non-profit organization from building or operating the housing except at a financial loss, or it would prevent a limited dividend organization from building or operating the housing without a reasonable return on its investment. A ZBA's decision is "consistent with local needs" if it applies requirements that are reasonable in view of the regional need for low- and moderate-income housing and the number of low-income persons in the city or town, as well as the need to protect health and safety, promote better site and building design, and preserve open space, if those requirements are applied as equally as possible to both subsidized and unsubsidized housing. Requirements are considered "consistent with local needs" if more than 10% of the city or town's housing units are low- or moderate-income units or if such units are on sites making up at least 1.5% of the total private land zoned for residential, commercial, or industrial use in the city or town. Requirements are also considered "consistent with local needs" if the application would result, in any one calendar year, in beginning construction of low- or moderate-income housing on sites making up more than 0.3% of the total private land zoned for residential, commercial, or industrial use in the city or town, or on ten acres, whichever is larger. The proposed law states that if any of its parts were declared invalid, the other parts would stay in effect.

Question 2: Do you approve of a law summarized below, on which no vote was taken by the Senate or the House of Representatives before May 4, 2010?

View as: # | %  
County Blank Votes Total Votes Cast
Barnstable More »
 
41,967
59,272
6,370
107,609
Berkshire More »
 
11,437
28,418
3,207
43,062
Bristol More »
 
71,661
89,008
14,334
175,003
Dukes More »
 
2,766
4,931
830
8,527
Essex More »
 
113,759
138,028
17,685
269,472
Franklin More »
 
8,051
18,230
1,795
28,076
Hampden More »
 
19,090
40,338
4,137
63,565
Hampshire More »
 
49,539
80,122
11,521
141,182
Middlesex More »
 
220,402
301,505
36,067
557,974
Nantucket More »
 
1,978
2,385
475
4,838
Norfolk More »
 
113,151
139,998
20,389
273,538
Plymouth More »
 
93,567
88,886
11,599
194,052
Suffolk More »
 
45,309
123,398
19,368
188,075
Worcester More »
 
111,009
145,722
17,618
274,349
Totals 900,405 1,254,759 164,799 2,319,963