Gov. Phil Murphy signed a bill, sponsored by Assemblyman Hal Wirths, to allow municipalities to accept payment-in-lieu-of-taxes for state or federally-subsidized low-income housing beyond the term of a housing project’s mortgage.
The town of Sparta established such an agreement with a low-income senior housing project; however, it became nullified when the housing complex paid off its mortgage sooner than expected.
“Our vulnerable and income-limited seniors need affordable housing and this law will help ensure they are able to live in the place they have called home for many years,” said Wirths (R-Sussex-Warren-Morris).
According to the Department of Human Services, more than half of retired elder‐only households in New Jersey lack annual incomes that will insulate them against poverty as they age.
The measure amends the Long Term Tax Exemption Law and the Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency Law of 1983 to allow state or federally-subsidized housing projects to receive a tax exemption beyond the current requirement of up to 35 years or until the expiration of its first mortgage. In lieu of property taxes, each housing project must pay 20 percent of annual gross revenue from each project situated on the property for each year of operation.
Assemblyman Parker Space is a cosponsor of the bill, which passed unanimously in December 2019. The Senate version of the bill, sponsored by Sen. Steve Oroho, passed unanimously in December 2018.