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HomeMy Public PortalAboutRockport Affordable Housing Trust meeting minutes 8-23-23Approved Minutes Rockport Affordable Housing Trust Fund August 23,2023 Meeting called to order at 6:30pm by Chair Diane Vella at the Town Hall Annex.All members present 1.Review and approve minutes of August 9 (submission and posting) Minutes of August 9th were reviewed and unanswered public questions were addressed.There was a question as to the number of VRBOs in town to assess impact on housing stock.The number noted on VRBO website is 378.The total number -which would include AirBnB, Craigslist and private listing is unknown at this time,it is hoped this number will be addressed on the Rockport HPP. Minutes were accepted with a motion by Denise Donnelly,seconded by Peter Souza.Approved Unanimously It was questioned as to the necessity of sending minutes to the town clerk.Peter Souza will reach out to Frank Taormina regarding website posting of minutes.It was confirmed that recordings of the meetings are not official minutes.Minutes that are written and approved are the official minutes of RAFTH meetings,so someone will need to write minutes every meeting.be approved and posted and sent to the town clerk.Peter volunteered to post the approved minutes on the Trust webpage of the Town of Rockport Website. 2.Review and approval of RAFHT vision and operating principles (posting) The Vision Statement was discussed and Amy Beaton made a motion to accept the vision statement,seconded by Denise Donnelly.Approved unanimously .Following this,the operating principles were discussed.Denise Donnelly made a motion to accept which was seconded by Peter Souza.Approved unanimously..Peter will post on the Trust page of the Town website. 3.New member posting on website Discussion of posting a new member position of RAFTH on the Town website occurred.It was noted that this member would need to initially be posted on the town website and that it could be posted in a second location -the RAFTH page.Peter will post on Town and Trust web pages 4.3A consultation for TOVOD-MBTA report-Bob Robert Simmons discussed that a second meeting with Bouhler consultants had occurred wherein the districts for the MBTA zoning were discussed.There was a tour of the town wherein the parties looked at sites.Jason Shaw and Robert Simmons looked at zoning with multifamily possibilities which may include special permit requirements,areas that already have similar structures,similar impact,and areas including pre-existing public housing,etc -restrictions notwithstanding. Robert Simmons mentioned that there are funding sources that will be denied if there is non compliance TOVOD-MBTA zoning.It is unclear if mixed use structures can be included. Diane Vella asked if the planning board intended to designate inclusive affordable housing requirements in the TOVOD-MBTA district.Robert Simmons noted no answer was provided.Denise Donnelly noted concern regarding developers and affordable units not being created.Robert Simmons noted that the average needs to be 15 dwellings per acre for the developer to create affordable units. 5.Meeting with developer report-Bob Robert Simmons stated that he had met with a developer to see the town and consider plans.At this time the considerations were not ready to be discussed. 6.Schedule a meeting with Erin George of Action,Inc Peter Souza noted that he had reached out to Erin George of Action and was waiting to hear back regarding a meeting to discuss Actions creation and support of affordable housing. 7.Meeting with Harborlight report -Diane &Amy Diane Vella and Amy Beaton discussed that they met with Andrew and Rosa of Harborlight Homes.They discussed the process -involvement,length of time,speaking with the public,and development of a plan.15 to 20 units is do-able for seniors &care units with services,The number of family units stated for Harborlight Homes ‘sweet spot for their feasibility and the Town financially,was 40-50 units.The cost to develop is fixed to the number of units.The lower the units the more money the town and other funders would have to pay to supplement. Anything under ten units is noted as cost prohibitive.The realistic timeline for the development of a project is 3-7 years.Site selection was noted as the hardest part as it can become a politically charged issue. It was noted that the RAFTH could also be utilized for repairs,down payments,and assistance. No state funding is available for condo/purchase development due to Rockport not being a designated “gateway city".Harborlight Homes prefers rentals for Multi-family affordable housing development 8.Capital Improvement and Equipment request Town Administrator sent to Chair the application for above,not applicable for RAFTH 9.RAFTH meeting schedule The next designated quarter (Nov.,Dec.,Jan.}meetings will be on zoom.There will be no September 27th meeting as Diane Vella will be out of town.The following meeting will be October 11th and October 25th.There will be a meeting on November 8th but not on the 22th due to the Holiday.There will be a meeting on December 13 but not on December 27 due to the Holiday. 10.Member Items Denise Donnelly presented a chart of how multiple housing resources are funded and how they exist structurally.Peter Souza will check with the housing authority to fill in the housing authority section and complete the chart.Denise Donnelly noted that this resource was to help people understand the”lanes”of the various groups working in or on Affordable Housing in Rockport.It was discussed that the RAFTH could engage in posting/sharing information re: resources on its section of the town website. Diane Vella noted that there would be a CHAPA Municipal Housing Trust training on September 21,2023 from 12pm-3pm.This is open to anyone and a RAFTH trustee is encouraged to attend and report back. 11.Public Comment Mr.Herm Lilja’s GDT letter to the editor on August 22,was noted and sent to all RAFTH members. It is confirmed that the new By-Laws for RAFTH to be voted on at Sept.11 Town Meeting is members of RAFTH will be 5 to 7 members.