Governor Kathy Hochul has proposed a solution to the state’s stagnant population growth: Build more housing. The Governor’s $227 billion budget plan includes a goal to add 800,000 new housing units in the coming years in a bid to increase the state’s population and reduce the high cost of rents and real estate.
During a speech in Rochester on Monday, Hochul outlined her vision for the housing program, aimed at reversing the trend of residents moving elsewhere in the country and losing political influence in Washington. The governor wants to see a modest 1% growth in housing every three years, saying “We believe in our future so much that people want to be here.”
The housing proposal includes provisions to push through projects despite opposition from local governments and “NIMBYs” (not in my backyard), who have blocked similar projects in the past. Hochul criticized the status quo, saying “We can’t live in a state that just stagnates.” The plan also includes state funding for water and sewer infrastructure to support the new housing.
However, the proposal to override local zoning has been met with criticism from local governments. The budget is expected to be passed by April 1, marking the start of the state’s fiscal year.
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