November 19, 2014: Cranston Mayor Allan Fung submits letter to RI Division of Planning recommending RhodeMap RI plan not be adopted
“I share some of the same concerns … expressed by the RI Public Expenditure Council … Thus, I would ask that the … committee not approve this (plan) … “
“What business would consider locating here (RI) if there are further social equity mandates that would be imposed …?”
December 1, 2014: Senator Marc Cote issued the following statement to the Center about the RhodeMap RI draft plan:
“I have seen first-hand the impact that HUD and state affordable housing mandates have had on creating an imbalance in Woonsocket’s tax base by adding an extra real estate tax burden on non-subsidized commercial and residential property owners in our community,” said Senator Mark Cote, Democrat state Senator, D-24.
“The state mandate to establish a preferential property tax cap on subsidized properties in Woonsocket caused a revenue shortfall. The Woonsocket legislative delegation submitted a bill in 2013 to the General Assembly seeking relief from this mandate, but supporters of the affordable housing/sustainable development movement successfully lobbied to have the bill vetoed by Governor Chafee,” Cote went on to say.
“The prospect of a state run Urban Redevelopment Authority, granted new powers, as envisioned in the RhodeMap RI draft plan is also concerning, in that it could give expanded government control over individual property owner rights.”
“As recommended in the bi-partisan letter I co-signed with concerned members of the House and Senate to the Division of Planning in November, the RhodeMap RI process must be indefinitely postponed. More public scrutiny, comment and potential revisions are required,” the Senator concluded.