Support households of all income levels

Objective 5.2: Support households of all income levels

Affordable Housing Strategy

Strategy 5.2.1: Affordable Housing Strategy

Develop a comprehensive and proactive affordable housing strategy that supports the provision of a wide range of housing types including for people of limited means, and also allows Acton to make progress on the Commonwealth's affordable housing goals set forth in Chapter 40B of the General Laws.

Housing Plan

Action Item 5.2.1.1: Housing Plan

Prepare an updated proactive plan1 to make additional rental and owner housing available at prices that Acton families of low and moderate income can afford and at the same time provide a means to make progress toward the 10% state requirement for affordable housing2 3 The plan should be consistent with the planning for key centers.
  • 1. The Town's last housing plan is here: https://doc.acton-ma.gov/dsweb/View/Collection-2277
  • 2. The Commonwealth allows for greater local control over affordable housing projects when a threshold of 10% of deeded affordable housing is achieved, or when significant progress is made in a given year. These thresholds are generally difficult for Acton to achieve, but achieving them is very helpful for the town's goals, if they can be achieved without significantly risking the general land use strategy of this plan.
  • 3. The housing plan should explore the potential of forming a partnership with a regional non-profit development entity.
Priority: 
Highest
Timing: 
Short-Term (complete by 2015)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Population and Housing
Planning?: 
Yes
Lead Owner: 
Planning Department<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Acton Community Housing Corporation
Acton Housing Authority
Planning Board
Selectmen
Management?: 
Yes

Incentives for well-located affordable housing

Action Item 5.2.1.2: Incentives for well-located affordable housing

Provide incentives for the development of housing that is “affordable” (meeting state standards) and/or simply within the means of people and families with low and moderate incomes, such as empty nesters, town staff, and young families, at small scattered sites especially in proximity to village centers.
Priority: 
2nd Highest
Timing: 
Medium-Term (complete by 2020)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Population and Housing
Other Inventory Elements: 
Land Use
Lead Owner: 
Planning Department<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Acton Community Housing Corporation
Planning Board
Selectmen

Purchase deed restrictions in existing housing

Action Item 5.2.1.3: Purchase deed restrictions in existing housing

Explore ways to continue and expand the conversion of existing below-market housing units to affordable units through purchase of deed restrictions.
Timing: 
Long-Term (complete by 2030)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Population and Housing
Lead Owner: 
Acton Community Housing Corporation<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Planning Department
Selectmen

Allow more dividing of existing lots for economical housing

Action Item 5.2.1.4: Allow more dividing of existing lots for economical housing

In the review of Acton’s zoning bylaws, support and expand the ability of residents who wish to subdivide their homes (and property) for economical housing (e.g., “in-law apartments”) by increasing the number of houses that qualify under the Zoning Bylaw1 and providing regulations that permit subdivision of a single residential lot for affordable housing purposes, subject to review of septic systems and effect on historic districts, as applicable.
Priority: 
2nd Highest
Timing: 
Short-Term (complete by 2015)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Land Use
Other Inventory Elements: 
Population and Housing
Lead Owner: 
Health Department<i> </i>
Planning Department<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Board of Health
Historic District Commission
Planning Board
Selectmen

Housing sites with open space purchases

Action Item 5.2.1.5: Housing sites with open space purchases

When the Town purchases large open space parcels, consider designating a portion as an affordable housing site1.
  • 1. Adding affordable housing to an open space purchase plan also helps fund the open space purchase.
Timing: 
New Sustained Action (start by 2015 and continue through 2030)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Population and Housing
Other Inventory Elements: 
Open Space
Lead Owner: 
Open Space Committee<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Acton Community Housing Corporation
Acton Housing Authority
Community Preservation Committee
Selectmen

Provide social support and economic opportunities for residents of low and moderate income

Strategy 5.2.2: Provide social support and economic opportunities for residents of low and moderate income

Match people in need with agencies

Action Item 5.2.2.1: Match people in need with agencies

Increase volunteer and community connections by working with the school system and the Town to identify those in need and match them with volunteers and agencies.
Timing: 
Short-Term (complete by 2015)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Facilities
Lead Owner: 
Community Services Coordinator <i></i>
Other Owners: 
Citizens and citizen groups
Council on Aging
Health Department
Police
School Committees

Support agencies serving residents in need

Action Item 5.2.2.2: Support agencies serving residents in need

Continue to support agencies working to serve the needs of the Town’s low and moderate income residents.
Timing: 
Ongoing (existing actions or efforts to be continued and expanded)
Primary Inventory Element: 
Facilities
Lead Owner: 
Selectmen<i> </i>
Other Owners: 
Citizens and citizen groups
Influence?: 
Yes