Planning Board ADU Hearing- November 15, 2022 - OBSERVER REPORT
Planning Board ADU Hearing- November 15, 2022
LWVM Observer – Cathy Marie Michael
Present: Chairman Robert Schaeffner, Ed Nilsson, Rossanna Ferrante, Steve Leverone, Andrew Christensen. Barton Hyte. Guest: Rebecca Curran Cutting, Town Planner
Agenda: Listen to public testimony and concerns with Accessory Dwelling Units, ADUs
Purpose of ADUs: To address shortage of housing in Marblehead
Recap, Power Point of previous meetings given by R Schaeffner of Planning Board:
Benefits of ADUs:
- Allow for family to live on same property
- Provide rental income, especially for retirees
- Allow seniors with large houses to age in place
- ADUs tend to be lower priced, so “naturally” affordable
- Converting illegal apartments to legal ADUs can improve safety
- Distribute new housing within existing buildings rather than new larger buildings
Draft Rules - open for discussion/comment
- One ADU per property
- Either ADU or primary residence must be owner occupied
- One parking space for each ADU must be provided
- The units cannot be sold independently of each other
- Short term rentals (AIRBNBs) are prohibited
- Process — by right in certain circumstances and by special permit in others
Items still up in the air
- Size limitation- Limit to 2 bedroom or a maximum of 1000sqft?
- How to ensure rules are followed — affidavits, certifications, annual inspections
- Limit rent to 70% or area rents as determined by HUD (greater affordability) or no restriction (more likely to be built)
- Kurt James - In favor of affordability. Salem has used 70% of going rate can use not more than 30% of income
- Probably necessary to implement state or town incentives to make it worthwhile for homeowners such as
- Subsidize the lower rent
- A grant through the Affordable Housing Trust
- Property tax exemption
- Will current in-law apartments qualify? Yes, can be brought up to code - complete an application to make sure it meets all requirements.
- Will there be a limit on number of occupants in an ADU?
- Erin Noonan - There is NO flood of applications in other towns. Seems they are being stifled. Her question was parked for future discussion.
- Lou Meyi - Town could offer loans at an affordable rate. Most banks do not offer loans for this.
Warrant article for Town Meeting 2023 must be drafted by January 28, 2022. PB will draft with enough time to elicit more comments.
For more info: Research Paper: Pioneer Institute: https://masmartgrowth.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/ADU-MSGA-Pioneer-paper-2018.pd