Upstate, small municipalities now higher priority for grants, housing projects

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New York Construction Report staff writer

Twenty New York municipalities will receive higher priority for certain state grants intended to revitalize communities and related funding for local housing projects to address the statewide shortage.

The first “pro-housing” communities were designated, a move officials say will help upstate and small municipalities overcome barriers impacting housing construction.

“Whether it’s multi-family or luxury, market rate, whatever it is – we just stopped,” Hochul said at the start of a housing roundtable held at the state Capitol this week. “We had too many restrictions, too many barriers. We didn’t have the political will to say that this is a great community, we can even be greater if we welcome more people in.”

The first Pro-Housing Communities are Binghamton, Dunkirk, Kingston, New Rochelle, Newburgh, Poughkeepsie and White Plains, Canton, Dryden, Lowville, New Lebanon, North Elba, Plattsburgh and Red Hook; and the villages of Canajoharie, Canton, Croton-on-Hudson, Johnson City, Mineola and Pulaski.

More than 80 communities have submitted letters of intent to be considered for designation and Hochul said she hopes Wednesday’s announcement will inspire more to apply, adding the state is on track to build and maintain 100,000 units of affordable housing over five years.

“I truly believe we can solve this if we have the commitment to working through some of the barriers that have been there for generations, the ones that people wouldn’t talk about,” Hochul said. “I want to continue partnering with communities and we’re going to keep our five-year $25 billion housing plan to build 100,000 units of affordable housing. We made that commitment two years ago. We’re still on path to build that housing.”

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