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Posted on: May 2, 2023

Village Board Vote Confirms Skokie’s Commitment to Affordable Housing

affordable housing

At their May 1, 2023 meeting, the Skokie Village Board voted to approve five Affordable Housing Policy goals and several actions recommended by the Plan Commission. 

Goals Approved

  • Study and assess the ongoing supply and demand for inclusive affordable housing in Skokie. (Goal A)
  • Preserve, protect, and improve Skokie’s existing affordable housing to be accessible and sustainable. (Goal B) 
  • Reduce “jobs/housing mismatch” and ensure that housing is available to all of Skokie’s workers. (Goal C)  
  • Create new opportunities to increase Skokie’s supply of affordable housing. (Goal D)
  • Support local and regional partner efforts to promote and expand fair housing. (Goal E)

Actions Approved

Produce an Inclusionary Housing Ordinance requiring certain new developments to include affordable housing. 
An Inclusionary Housing Ordinance creates standards for new residential developments to include on-site affordable units for low- and moderate-income households. Instituting this ordinance supports maintaining Skokie’s housing affordability levels as well as the diversity of income levels in buildings. The percentage of on-site units required by the Village would be at a graduated scale based on the size of the development with a required 5 percent for developments containing 11-150 units and 10 percent for developments containing 151 or more units. Affordability levels would be split between 60 percent and 80 percent of Area Median Income and affordable units would need to be a mix of all unit types offered throughout the building. 

Establish a Skokie Land Trust.
A Land Trust supports the creation of affordable owner-occupied housing throughout Skokie.   In a land trust model, the housing structure or improvement upon the land is kept separate from the underlying land.  Income-qualified residents would then be able purchase the homes, but not land on which the houses sit. By separating the home from the land, the homes in a land trust remain available in perpetuity at a lower cost for low- and moderate-income families.

Create a subcommittee of the Village’s Plan Commission. 
This subcommittee would be comprised of members of a cross-section of commissions and representatives from all segments of the Village whose charge is to update the housing chapter of the Village’s Comprehensive Plan.

What’s next?

The Village Board is scheduled to review and vote on an inclusionary housing ordinance at the June 20 meeting.

The Board agreed that this move serves as a springboard and important step towards ensuring that Skokie continues to provide a variety of housing.

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