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4.30.19 FEMA Unveils ‘Risk Rating 2.0’

FEMA announced changes to the way the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) will charge homeowners for flood risks. The change—dubbed “Risk Rating 2.0”—could have a significant impact on flood insurance bills for millions of homeowners.

Risk Rating 2.0 aims to  improve the policyholder experience by leveraging industry best practices and current technology to deliver rates that are transparent and better reflect a property’s unique flood risk.

The new risk rating system will fundamentally change the way FEMA rates a property’s flood risk and prices insurance. With Risk Rating 2.0, FEMA is pairing state-of-the-art industry technology with the NFIP’s mapping data to establish a more comprehensive understanding of risk at both the community and individual level.

Risk Rating 2.0 will help customers better understand their flood risk and provide them with more accurate rates based on their unique risk. This will include determining a customer’s flood risk by incorporating multiple, logical rating characteristics–like different types of flood, the distance a building is from the coast or another flooding source, or the cost to rebuild a home. The new rating plan will also aim to ensure customers will no longer face dramatic rate increases during map changes or at the edge of flood zones. Risk Rating 2.0 will comply with existing statutory caps on premium increases to help transition policyholders who may face otherwise substantial rate increases.

Read more from FEMA about Risk Rating 2.0 on the official announcement.

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4.25.19 Boston real estate firm signs agreement to buy Garelick Farms on the Lynnway

<!--[if gte mso 10]> <![endif]-->A Boston-based real estate firm has struck a deal to purchase the shuttered Garelick Farms plant in Lynn and says it will work with the city to create – eventually -- a mixed-use neighborhood that rivals Assembly Square in Somerville, Thomas Grillo reports at the Lynn Item.

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4.9.19 Saugus Approves 2 Year Construction Moratorium on Multi-Family Dwellings

Saugus Town Meeting members unanimously approved a two-year moratorium on the construction of multi-family dwellings of three or more units.


The vote by Town Meeting members at Monday’s special Town Meeting amends the zoning bylaws to prohibit the issuance of building permits for multi-family dwellings of three or more units in any zoning district in town for two years.

Read more from WIckedLocal Saugus here.


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4.9.19 Next Salem Housing Forum is April 23rd

Over 200 people attended the Salem Housing Forum on March 5th. As a follow up to that discussion, on April 23rd a Salem Housing Workshop on Inclusionary Housing and Accessory Dwelling Units will be held.  The forum will focus on discussion of the city's housing challenges + review these two potential tools to help meet housing needs.

Many young adults, working families and seniors are struggling to find adequate, affordable housing in Salem. This has an impacts the entire city and threatens the character and livability of our community. Many municipalities have local laws requiring a percentage of new affordable units as part of any new development (inclusionary housing). In addition, cities/towns are increasingly looking to utilize existing housing stock to enable in-law units to help address their housing needs (accessory dwelling units).

 These options and a look forward to continuing an important dialogue on housing needs and tools that can put in place to help address this in Salem takes place on April 23rd at the Community Life Center, 401 Bridge Street.  6pm-8pm





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4.5.19 Housing Choice Legislation to Address Housing Shortage

Massachusetts has been experienceing a robust economy combined with a lag in housing starts over the past 20 years which has created a tight housing market and increasing home prices.  NSAR supports the proposed Housing Choice legislation to help spur new housing by making it easier to permit certain projects.

"What Housing Choice does is lower the threshold of local approval for housing production from a two-thirds vote ... to move that down from two-thirds to a simple majority for about nine different types of housing developments," says state Housing and Economic Development Secretary Mike Kennealy.

Many housing projects that have garnered a majority vote often fail to win supermajority when it comes to winning approval, he said.

The bill would lower the approval threshold for transit-oriented developments, in which at least 10 percent of apartments are affordable

Read the full Gloucester Daily Times coverage about North Shore Community efforts here.

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3.26.19 First Phase of Lynnway Site Redevelopment Underway

Work began this week on the construction of a $1.4 million seawall, the first phase of the redevelopment of the former Beacon Chevrolet site into 332 waterfront market-rate apartments.

City officials are anticipating a groundbreaking of the $90 million development in the spring, which would transform a 14-acre site, dubbed North Harbor, that has sat vacant for three decades.

Construction of the new 48,000-square-footseawall is expected to be completed in late spring or early summer.

Read more about the first phase in the Lynn Item.


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