Text from the Commonwealth Housing Task Force section of The Boston Foundation website
There is a serious and escalating housing crisis in Massachusetts, a situation now recognized by many sectors of the community. Young adults who grew up in the Commonwealth cannot afford to raise their families in their old neighborhoods. Low- and moderate-income families are being priced out of their rental units and feel the dream of homeownership slipping away. And most serious for the economic health of the Commonwealth, Massachusetts employers are finding it increasingly difficult to recruit new workers – and to retain existing highly-skilled staff – because of the very high cost of housing. The Commonwealth Housing Task Force (CHTF) was convened to address these issues.
Building on our Heritage: A Housing Strategy for Smart Growth and Economic Development. The proposals included in that report served as the foundation of statewide legislation, the new Chapter 40R (Smart Growth Zoning and Housing Development Act), enacted by the Massachusetts Legislature and signed by the Governor in June of 2004. Implementing regulations for Chapter 40R were issued in March of 2005. View a detailed timeline of the history of CHTF.
The story of the CHTF is a remarkable one, and offers a case study in building a coalition of diverse interests into an effective advocacy group.
More information and resources about the CHTF can be found on the Boston Foundation’s website.