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Rye Brook Mayor Responds To 'Inflammatory' Affordable Housing Report

Mayor Paul Rosenberg.
Mayor Paul Rosenberg. Photo Credit: Contributed

RYE BROOK, N.Y. -- Rye Brook's Mayor Paul Rosenberg responded to a report labeling the village's zoning potentially exclusionary, based on the results of a Huntington Analysis .

The following are excerpts from his statement, which can be read in full in the attached filed at the end of this article.

First of all, it should be noted that the Village of Rye Brook is not a party to the settlement between the Federal Government and the County of Westchester. Prior to the settlement, the village already had more than 40 units of affordable housing. However, since the county settlement was approved, Rye Brook has been very proactive to encourage more affordable housing. As a community, we have:

  • Provided a report that identified approximately 20 locations throughout the village where additional affordable housing could potentially be located in Rye Brook.
  • Adopted the vast majority of the recommended Model Ordinance that was determined to be acceptable to the monitor. This includes requirements that many new site plans and subdivisions also include affordable housing.
  • Created a new Affordable Housing Floating Zone which allows affordable housing to be placed as of right in any zoning district. This floating zone (enacted in Dec 2011) may address concerns suggested in the Huntington analysis.
  • Discussed affordable housing in our newly adopted Rye Brook Comprehensive Plan.

I also note that I am personally not aware of any formal application for affordable housing that has ever been denied in Rye Brook.

... In last night’s report, the Monitor states that “Rye Brook’s zoning code, taken together with census and housing distribution data, provides evidence of clustering in violation of Huntington and (the R-2F district) is an area which is clearly less desirable and could be considered stigmatizing." Here, the monitor is implying that our zoning code purposefully clusters minorities in certain less-desirable parts of the village. I wonder how the residents of this district feel about the monitor’s inflammatory statements.

The fact is that this is an area where housing happens to be more affordable, is close to public transportation and has the benefit of being adjacent to a shopping center which has made substantial investments to making itself a vibrant center of our community.

... That being said, Rye Brook has put together a task force to analyze and respond to last night’s monitor’s report.  We will continue to work collegially with the County Executive’s office, the County Legislature, and the federal monitor to eliminate any potential barriers to having affordable housing in Rye Brook.

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