AFFORDABLE HOUSING HIGHLIGHTS: Recent Report: Feeling
the Pinch: Wages And Housing In New Hampshire (New Hampshire
Lack of safe, affordable housing by large numbers
of New Hampshire people undermines the state's economic vitality and the
strength and stability of its families and communities. The New Hampshire
Housing Forum will provide education and advocate strong public policies
that encourage the development and maintenance of safe affordable housing.
Contact Information: NH
Housing Forum C/O AFSC
4 Park St. Suite 209
Concord, NH 03301
Overview: In June 1988, the New Hampshire legislature initiated
a study on sprawl with the appointment of a six-member panel established
to study ways of managing land use to reduce sprawl and protect rural character.1
After holding weekly meetings with various stakeholders, the panel reported
its findings to the legislature and the Governor in October 1998.2
The report recommends eight actions, including a recommendation that the
Office of State Planning assume a "leadership role in guiding and coordinating
funding policies; to educate local planning and zoning authorities with
nature, causes and remedies for sprawl they can act upon; and to continue
to develop and promulgate model ordinances and planning devices for localities.
The above material is excerpted
with permission from "Smart Growth at Century's End: The State of the States"
by Patricia E. Salkin, published in The Urban Lawyer, Sumr 1999
v 31 n 3, p. 601. For a complete copy of the article, please contact
The Urban Lawyer.
Key Laws: In an effort to "effectively manage growth, not
stop it," Governor Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire announced the GrowSmart
NH initiative. Among other proposals the GrowSmart NH requires the
· State agencies should consider smart
growth guidelines when distributing state grants. · Increase brownfield redevelopment
funding. · Encourage the state DOT to consider
"place-based" design and construction. For more information, visit
HB 1259 Smart Growth (2000) This act establishes a coordinated and comprehensive
effort by state agencies for economic growth, resource protection, and
planning policy to encourage smart growth. This will direct the Office
of State Planning to encourage and assist planning, growth management and
development activities of cities and towns and groups of cities and towns
with the purpose of encouraging smart growth. Also, take a leadership
role in encouraging smart growth and preserving farmland, open space land,
and traditional village centers.
HB 1416 Brownfields Revolving Loan Fund (2000) This bill authorizes the state of New Hampshire
to participate in the federally funded state brownfields cleanup revolving
loan funds. Loan funds shall be administered by the commissioner of the
department of environmental services. This is a federally funded
program that states are free to join if they wish. If landowner agree
to voluntary cleanup of their property, the state will assist them with
financing, and agree to limit their liability if any contamination is found.
HB 288 Land Use and Farmland Preservation (1999) This bill extends the reporting date and increases
the membership of the Environment and Agricultural Committee to study land
management, protection of farmland, rural character, environmental quality,
and sprawl. This bill also authorizes the committee to monitor progress
of sprawl avoidance action in the state, and publicize its purpose and
any results of its actions.
HB 636 Brownfields Transfer (1997) This bill clarifies a municipality's ability
to acquire environmentally contaminated property, without liability for
the contamination, in order to convey the property to an eligible person
in the brownfields program and allows municipalities to grant tax abatements
to facilitate the transfer of the property.
and Cultural Byways Program The Office of State Planning, in cooperation
with the Department of Transportation, has undertaken a program to create
a statewide byways system that features natural and cultural resources
for the purpose of attracting New Hampshire travelers and out-of-state
tourists. The Scenic and Cultural Byways Program has established a process
for nominating roads as official State Byways, designated over 900 miles
of road as Scenic Byways throughout the state and has undertaken corridor
management plans in the Connecticut River Valley, North Country, Lakes
Region, Lake Sunapee Region, and the Seacoast and supports related activities
pursuant to those byways. Designation to the state-wide network makes a
byway eligible for federal transportation TE-21 funds that allow up upgrading
pedestrian facilities, protection of byway resources and promotional material.
to Governor Shaheen on Sprawl This report is in response to Governor Jeanne
Shaheen's Executive Order 99-2, her proclamation directing state agencies
both to recognize the importance of preserving New Hampshire's traditional
communities and landscapes, and to evaluate actions they either are taking
or might be taking to further that goal. That order underscores the importance
of our landscape features as contributors to the overall quality of life
in New Hampshire. It recognizes the impact that public actions by state
agencies may have on these features, as individual decisions are made in
rulemaking, in grant making, and in deciding where to locate state offices
and other public facilities.http://www.state.nh.us/governor/sprawl.pdf
"House gets ready to be land locked: Sides differ
on how much to give to conservation program," Concord Monitor. March 21,
Organizations: American Farmland Trust Northeast Field Program
110 Spring Street
Saratoga Springs, NY 12866
Hampshire Main Street Center The NHMSC was established in 1996 as a separate
and private, statewide delegate agency of CDFA, dedicated to empowering
communities within the state to maintain, strengthen and revitalize the
unique physical, economic, historical and cultural characteristics of its
own downtown centers.
1 Ch. 197 of the
N.H. Laws of 1998 (H.B. 1238). It's statement of purpose, the law asserts
that sprawl has disrupted the traditional character of New Hampshire Communities,
contributing to a loss of "a sense of place."
2 Land Use Management
and Farmland Preservation Study, Final Report (Oct. 1998).