On Tuesday, March 14, at the Southampton Town Board Meeting, the Town Board voted unanimously on a resolution sponsored by Councilwoman Cyndi McNamara calling on the Governor and State Legislature to uphold local zoning authority, as granted by Municipal Home Rule Law, in any legislation or state programs created to address affordable housing.
The proposed legislation within the Governor’s 2022-2023 Executive Budget, as well as legislation introduced in the New York Assembly and Senate, would preempt local governments’ zoning authority in an effort to expand affordable housing throughout municipalities.
“Our zoning code allows us to maintain the character of our local communities,” stated Councilwoman McNamara. “Regulating residential housing falls under the purview of municipal home rule which must be preserved at all costs. Under the Governor’s plan, local communities like Hampton Bays with its availability of developable land in close proximity to the LIRR could see an increase in density they are simply not equipped to handle. I thank my colleagues for their unanimous support of this important message.”
The Town Board recognizes the need for affordable housing, evidenced most recently by its support and adoption of the half-percent tax to fund the Peconic Bay Region Community Preservation Fund, which will allow for the creation of more affordable housing opportunities within the Town. The Town would prefer that the state support and expand on these opportunities with funding for sewer infrastructure and/or incentives.