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Tuesday, January 15, 2013

IHDA Proposes Rules to Implement Affordable Housing Act

Many of you may recall the controversy when the Illinois General Assembly adopted the Affordable Housing Planning and Appeal Act in 2004.  That Act required Illinois municipalities to adopt affordable housing plans by April of 2005.  The Act also included an appeals procedure for developers who were denied approval to construct affordable housing in a municipality.  Those appeals would be heard by the Illinois Housing Appeals Board.  Municipalities meeting the statutory minimum requirement for affordable housing stock would be exempt from the Act.  Because the Act did not preempt home rule authority, it only applies to non-home rule municipalities. 
The Act authorizes the Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) to promulgate rules to implement the Act, including authorizing the Illinois Housing Appeals Board.  Recently, the IHDA issued proposed rules, a copy of which can be found here.  The rules should be of concern to Illinois municipalities who are not otherwise exempt from the Act, as discussed in more detail on the Illinois Municipal League's website.  In sum, the rules attempt to expand the reach of the Act to home rule municipalities.  They also impose penalties for noncompliance without statutory authorization.  More concerning to municipalities is the shifting of the burden of proof in an affordable housing appeal from the developer to the municipality, in direct conflict with language in the Act. 
Thanks to the IML for reporting on this important development.


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