As provided in the 2020 Residential Rental Cost Survey completed by the New Hampshire Housing Finance Authority, “To sustain New Hampshire’s economy, additional housing is needed to support our labor force, as well as those who cannot work because of age or disability. According to a recent study, about 20,000 more housing units are needed to meet current demand and stabilize the market.” However, “To afford the statewide median cost of a typical two-bedroom apartment with utilities, a New Hampshire renter would have to earn 125% of the estimated statewide median renter income, or over $56,500 a year.”
Everyone understands there is no one solution to overcoming these challenges and meeting these demands. Since July 2021, City Administration has been working in conjunction with the City Council to build understanding and provide options for incremental changes to help alleviate barriers and obstacles in the development of housing. Actions to this point include:
- July 19, 2021 - Through an informational memo and PowerPoint Presentation, City Administration presents Information on Housing and Affordability in Lebanon.
- August 4, 2021 - Council adopts Policy CC-105 – Community Revitalization Tax Credit Guidelines, which provides guidance to those wishing to apply for tax relief under the Community Revitalization Tax Relief Incentive Program (commonly known as NH RSA 79-E).
- January 26, 2022, and March 23, 2022 - City Council holds Work Sessions to discuss and consider the City’s role in the development of housing in Lebanon.
- April 21, 2022 - At a special meeting of the City Council, a Resolution is adopted that directs the City Manager to take steps to Enable, Incentivize, and Partner in the development of housing needs not currently being addressed by the market through some very specific actions.
- June 10, 2022 - The City Council is provided with an anticipated Timeline for Action on items contained in the April 21st Resolution.
- July 6, 2022 - The City Council readopts an updated version of the City of Lebanon Housing and Community Development Plan.