The New Castle Town Board voted Tuesday night to adopt a local law in order to carry out terms of Westchester County’s 2009 federal housing settlement, which will bring significant changes to land use and zoning.
The local law is a tweaked variation of a “model ordinance” that municipalities being impacted by the settlement can use. Under the county’s federally mediated settlement with the Anti-Discrimination Center, at least 750 housing units must be built over a seven-year period. Thirty-one communities, including New Castle, are acceptable places for the construction because they have lower percentages of racial minority residents. Officially, the housing is called Affordable Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing, or AFFH.
The purpose of the law is to recognize and codify what is called fair and affordable housing, including which income groups can qualify for rentals or sales, size-to-occupancy figures and turnover of units. The housing must also be aggressively marketed to people who are “least likely to apply,” which can mean non-white residents. However, any person who meets the income thresholds (click here for details), regardless of race, can qualify.
Read more at the Chappaqua Mount Kisko Patch