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National Inclusionary Housing Conference: Day 1

National Inclusionary Housing Conference’s first day was packed full of powerful speeches and intellectual discussions on inclusionary zoning. Ron Sims, Deputy Secretary of HUD, provided opening remarks to an audience of over 200 industry experts from all over the country. Sims, a native of King County in Seattle, gave a powerful speech on his personal experiences of the many benefits of inclusionary housing, when done right, throughout his extensive career in housing.

A panel discussion moderated by
Kalima Rose of PolicyLink, followed Sims keynote. The panel was composed of David Rusk, Metropolitan Area Research Council and Innovative Housing Institute, Derek Douglas, Special Assistant to the President for Urban Affairs and Mercedes Marques, Assistant Secretary for Community Planning and Development.

Two workshops were held following the panel discussion. “Let’s make it work for the developer!” focused on what a program would look like that would work for and with builders while still providing public benefits. The discussion was moderated by Rob Wiener, California Coalition for Rural Housing, and featured Brian Allen Jackson, EYA, Raquel Montenegro, Maryland-National Capital Building Industry Association and Bill Daleure, Avant Garde Real Estate Consulting, Charlotte, NC. Attendees heard real feedback from builders who have developed in communities with inclusionary zoning ordinances.

The second workshop examined the latest and greatest in inclusionary zoning research. Erica Poethig, Deputy Assistant Secretary for PD & R, HUD moderated the discussion that featured Heather Schwartz, RAND Corporation, Gerrit Knaap, National Center for Smart Growth Research, and Jeff Lubell of the Center for Housing Policy. Schwartz presented her findings on a research study on public housing in Montgomery County that found a positive effect in math and English of elementary school children who live in public housing and attend moderate poverty schools. Knaap’s research on inclusionary zoning effects on housing prices showed that there was an increase in housing prices in jurisdictions that adopted inclusionary zoning practices, the price effects occured in the higher price markets and the effects varied with the terms of the program. Jeff Lubell, spoke of a study on inclusionary zoning in relation to new transit lines. Overall, the findings showed that with a new transit line, home prices grow much faster in metro areas and rent prices increase significantly.

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