Local MI governments may now green-light affordable housing projects

Team of architects on construction site affordable housing
Posted at 1:34 PM, Jun 29, 2023
and last updated 2023-06-29 13:34:28-04

LANSING, Mich. — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed a bill Thursday to grant more communities the ability to green-light affordable housing projects.

The Michigan Executive Office of the Governor says House Bill 4375 expands the number of communities that can establish land bank fast track authorities, allowing local governments to turn abandoned or blighted structures into affordable housing units.

Previously, only counties and the city of Detroit could establish land bank fast track authorities.

“Revitalizing places to make Michigan communities more attractive places to live, work, and invest is a key part of our strategy to help more individuals, families, and businesses make it in Michigan,” says Governor Whitmer. “This legislation will widen access to the powerful economic development tools land bank fast track authorities provide. Whether it’s renovating the old bank or theatre on main street, or turning abandoned lands into places of opportunity, Michigan communities are on the move, open for business, and showing the world how much we have to offer. Let’s keep working together to grow our economy and build a Michigan where anyone can envision a bright future for themselves.”

We’re told the law now includes cities and townships with populations exceeding 50,000 if that city or township is not located in a county that already has a county authority.

“Affordable housing is a nation issue that requires local solutions,” says Grand Rapids Mayor Rosalynn Bliss. “Thanks to our Governor and lawmakers in the legislature, this bill gives cities like Grand Rapids another potential tool to address critical housing needs.”

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