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Affordable Housing

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NEWS
October 20, 2011 | By Geoff Mulvihill, Associated Press
A three-judge panel has slowed Gov. Christie's effort to make quick changes to the state's affordable housing requirements. The state appeals panel issued a stay Tuesday on his plan for new affordable housing procedures and scheduled a hearing for February. Until then, the state was ordered to follow the affordable housing procedures that were in place before the state Council on Affordable Housing was abolished last month. The ruling is the latest in a 40-year debate. Courts have ruled repeatedly that New Jersey municipalities are obligated to provide housing that low- and moderate-income residents can afford.
NEWS
June 8, 1989 | By Kathleen Martin Beans, Special to The Inquirer
A Bucks County Planning Commission official told Doylestown Township supervisors Tuesday that housing in the median price level is well beyond the reach of families with median incomes. "The affordable-housing crisis is much more than a matter of social concern affecting the less fortunate," said Kirk Emerson, director of countywide planning. "It has become a mainstream problem with far-reaching economic implications. " Emerson spoke to the supervisors and residents as part of a pilot program in which township officials offered to participate in a study with the county Planning Commission.
NEWS
October 6, 1999 | By Carrie Budoff and Marc Levy, INQUIRER SUBURBAN STAFF
The state Council on Affordable Housing is set to take a long-awaited vote today on Moorestown's amended plan to provide housing units for low- and moderate-income individuals. The plan, debated for almost two years, provides for rehabilitating some housing in Moorestown and paying two other towns - Mount Holly and Beverly - to supply housing there under what are known as regional contribution agreements. The council, which enforces fair-housing mandates, is to vote separately today on an arrangement in which Moorestown would pay Mount Holly $4.1 million to take 204 units of its 691-unit obligation over three years.
NEWS
April 15, 2009 | By Jennifer Lin INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Local nonprofit developers of affordable housing received almost $10 million in grants yesterday from the Federal Home Loan Banks of Pittsburgh and San Francisco, the largest awards to the region since the banks began funding low-income housing in 1990. The money is to go into 18 projects - 15 in Philadelphia and three in surrounding Pennsylvania counties - and produce 861 units of affordable housing. At a City Hall news conference, Mayor Nutter, U.S. Rep. Chaka Fattah (D., Pa.)
NEWS
November 15, 2011 | By James Osborne, Inquirer Staff Writer
Cherry Hill had its affordable-housing funds frozen Monday and was ordered to have a plan for spending the money approved by Superior Court. The order by Judge Robert G. Millenky followed allegations by the Fair Share Housing Center, which has been in litigation with Cherry Hill since 2001, that the township broke state rules about spending development fees intended for affordable-housing projects. "Fair Share has uncertainty" about use of the funds, "and the court finds reasonably so," Millenky said.
NEWS
February 8, 2011 | By Maya Rao, Inquirer Trenton Bureau
After Jean Siciliano lost her job as a purchasing agent during a corporate downsizing in 2009, she feared she could no longer afford to raise her teenage son in Evesham. She stayed in the suburb because a nonprofit agency approved her for a spacious apartment in a new housing development on Sharp Road for $658 in monthly rent. That development was built under a 1985 law - enacted in response to state Supreme Court rulings - requiring towns to provide low- and moderate-income housing.
NEWS
June 2, 2010 | By JAN RANSOM, ransomj@phillynews.com 215-854-5218
Eladia Fonseca came to Philadelphia as a 9-year-old burn victim, her mother seeking better care for her daughter than what was available after their home in Puerto Rico destroyed by fire. Fonseca endured years of living in inadequate housing here, some of which had no heat, was infested with mice and bugs and was surrounded by drug activity. Now 51, Fonseca proudly showed off her cozy, newly renovated three-bedroom home, one of 58 affordable-housing units scattered around her Spring Garden neighborhood that are part of a $19.6 million project that was unveiled yesterday.
NEWS
December 5, 2011 | By Maya Rao, Inquirer Trenton Bureau
The Salem County town of Carneys Point needed to meet a state requirement to provide affordable housing, and developer John Bibeau had a plan: build an 88-unit apartment complex for disabled veterans and people with special needs and low and moderate incomes. He found an old factory building to serve as the site. He sat down with municipal officials, who had solicited him to do the project initially and to negotiate financing. In all, he said, he poured close to $750,000 into buying the property and paying fees for consultants, architects, and engineers.
NEWS
March 20, 1996 | By Matthew Futterman, INQUIRER CORRESPONDENT
Mayor Gerald Luongo said last night that he has devised a plan to deal with the need to build affordable housing. His announcement came as more than 200 angry residents packed a Planning Board meeting to protest a proposed development that would include 48 units of affordable housing near Pitman-Downer and Fish Pond Roads. Protesting affordable housing has become a monthly ritual this year. This time, homeowners who live near the proposed development had their chance to tell the Planning Board why it should reject the Barnside Development Corp.
NEWS
July 28, 1991 | By Christine Bahls, Special to The Inquirer
The Bristol Township Council has reversed itself and will help the county get additional funding for a new affordable-housing program. The new program, titled Home Investment in Affordable Housing and referred to as HOME, is a federally funded plan that would help qualified people become first-time homeowners, help renters, assist nonprofit groups in rehabilitating homes for the needy, or even provide grants for new affordable housing. A meeting was held Thursday night at the behest of the county so that the Bristol Township Council could reconsider its position.
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NEWS
July 23, 2015 | By Erin McCarthy, Inquirer Staff Writer
Tuesday marked "a milestone in [Cherry Hill] Township's Mount Laurel compliance," according to an expert housing consultant, the lone witness to testify before a judge approved settlements ending a 40-year-old affordable housing dispute in the Camden County community. "It's a complicated case," said Philip Caton, who has served as an affordable housing consultant to more than 45 municipalities, including Cherry Hill. "I didn't think I'd be here for a settlement. " One settlement, approved Tuesday by Superior Court Judge Nan Famular, could bring up to 124 affordable rental units to the township under proposed redevelopment plans for three sites on the west side of Cherry Hill.
NEWS
July 16, 2015 | By Madeline R. Conway, Inquirer Staff Writer
Finding an affordable place of her own was so important to Latoya Wright that when she learned that the Philadelphia Housing Authority was building green homes in Strawberry Mansion, she stood in line at 1 in the morning in the hope of securing a spot. The mother of two had been on the waiting list for public housing for more than a decade. The hours in line, said Wright, 31, were worth it. This week, she and her daughters - Mahagony, 13, and Jayda, 6 - will move out of her sister's home into a two-bedroom townhouse at 2800 Oakdale St., the site of 12 new affordable housing units in the North Philadelphia neighborhood.
NEWS
July 15, 2015 | By Michaelle Bond, Inquirer Staff Writer
The home on Valley Road in Coatesville sat empty from November - when a bank foreclosed on it - until May. Wells Fargo then took the rowhouse, more than a century old, and donated it to the Housing Authority of the County of Chester this spring. Dale Gravett, executive director of the housing authority, called it a much-needed gift - one the county will use to house a family. Families in Chester County fill waiting lists for affordable housing, Gravett said, even though the county is one of Pennsylvania's richest.
NEWS
July 14, 2015 | By Erin McCarthy, Inquirer Staff Writer
A decades-old affordable housing dispute could be coming to an end in Cherry Hill, an area with one of the nation's least affordable housing markets for the middle class. At fairness hearings scheduled for July 21, a state Superior Court judge in Camden County is set to scrutinize two settlement agreements - one between Cherry Hill and housing advocates Fair Share Housing Center and the NAACP, and the second between the township and the developer Cherry Hill Land Associates. Both tentative agreements await the approval of the judge, who was granted oversight of municipalities' affordable housing obligations in a March state Supreme Court ruling.
REAL_ESTATE
July 6, 2015 | By Paul Jablow, For The Inquirer
There may be no way to hold back the tide of gentrification in such neighborhoods as Fishtown, but Sandy Salzman is trying to find ways to keep it from washing away moderate-income residents. Salzman is executive director of New Kensington Community Development Corp., and the Awesometown townhouse project is its first foray into mixed affordable housing: 10 units selling at the market rate of about $400,000, and four subsidized by NKCDC to sell for half that, with the "winners" picked by lottery.
NEWS
July 3, 2015 | By Erin McCarthy, Inquirer Staff Writer
In 2010, John Erlenbach walked away from a job at Acme Markets, where he had worked in every area from produce to shelf stocking for 20 years since leaving the Navy. "I wasn't well," Erlenbach, 61, said. He struggled with depression, couldn't hold a job or keep an apartment, grew apart from his five kids, and was homeless for years - sleeping on couches, the street, or in shelters in Salem and Camden Counties. On Wednesday, Erlenbach stood in front of his one-bedroom townhouse at Riverfront Village in Pennsauken, a 75-unit affordable-housing complex for working families earning less than 60 percent of the area's median household income, as well as five previously homeless veterans.
NEWS
June 17, 2015 | BY MENSAH M. DEAN, Daily News Staff Writer deanm@phillynews.com, 215-854-4172
IN SOME Philadelphia neighborhoods, economic revitalization is in full bloom, with new housing springing up like colorful flowers. But those flowers often come with price tags that put them far out of reach for the average city dweller. That's why city officials yesterday gathered on a vacant city-owned lot in Francisville to announce the latest step in a plan to make new housing units affordable to more people in areas that are moving on up. "Essentially, today we're rolling out the first phase of a very aggressive plan to ensure affordability," City Council President Darrell Clarke said.
REAL_ESTATE
June 15, 2015 | By Alan J. Heavens, Inquirer Real Estate Writer
One in a continuing series spotlighting real estate markets in the region's communities. 'Nice town, friendly people. " That's how Maple Shade sees itself - it's the official motto of this Burlington County community. And you'll get no argument from most folks, residents or not. Larry O. Blinn, of Century 21 Alliance in Moorestown, who has lived in Maple Shade for 18 years, calls it "family-friendly. " "It may be politically incorrect, but I call it a 'blue-collar town,' " Blinn says.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 30, 2015 | By Inga Saffron, Inquirer Architecture Critic
For years, planners and residents have been trying to understand why Haddon Township isn't more like Collingswood, the millennial enclave that is South Jersey's answer to Fairmount and East Passyunk. Situated side by side in Camden County, the two towns are old-school commuter suburbs, with small house lots, good sidewalks, and great transit to Center City. They even share a main street, Haddon Avenue, which runs through the center of both. The pair are models for what smart-growth advocates call walkable urbanism, but Collingswood's downtown is by far the buzzier place.
NEWS
May 21, 2015 | BY MENSAH M. DEAN, Daily News Staff Writer deanm@phillynews.com, 215-854-4172
FOR ALL THE bluster, blather and bad blood the only two contested district City Council primary races generated, the results ended up just like the eight uncontested district races. The winners and still future incumbents are: 2nd District Councilman Kenyatta Johnson and 7th District Councilwoman Maria Quinones-Sanchez. Last night's victories all but guarantee that Johnson and Sanchez will be re-elected in November because neither has an opponent in the general election. In the 2nd District, which includes Point Breeze and parts of Center City, South and Southwest Philly, Johnson, 41, held off a spirited challenge from self-financed businessman Ori Feibush, 31. The rivals clashed over just about everything, especially development, with Feibush embracing the word "gentrification" and all that it entails, including advocating that the city sell off its vacant lots to developers.
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