Categories: New York State
Governor Hochul delivered her 2022 State of the State address today. We are thrilled to see that housing and homelessness are a large part of the administration’s agenda, including our collective advocacy ask for 10,000 units of supportive housing be included as part of a new 5 year affordable housing plan. In response to this news the Network has released the following statement:
Governor Hochul has rightly recognized the immediate need to address New York’s twin affordable housing and homelessness crises by laying out a far-reaching, $25 billion five-year plan that will not only create desperately needed new units but preserve those that already exist. Her pledge to add 7,000 more supportive housing units while preserving 3,000 others goes above and beyond previous commitments and heeds advocates’ calls for much-needed predictability for developers and service providers alike. We also commend the governor for her acknowledgement that affordable housing can be an important economic development tool that makes a positive impact on individuals and communities, and for seeking creative solutions to streamline the process for getting new units online. We look forward to seeing the details of the proposals Governor Hochul outlined today in her executive budget and look forward to working with her and the legislature to ensuring these ideas come to fruition in the final spending plan.
Some of the highlights of the State of the State include:
- $25 Billion Five Year Housing Plan - To advance the recovery in an equitable way and improve housing security for all New Yorkers, Governor Hochul will initiate a new, $25 billion, five-year Housing Plan to create and preserve 100,000 affordable homes in both urban and rural communities, including 10,000 homes with support services for vulnerable populations, and electrify an additional 50,000 homes as part of the State’s plan to electrify 1 million homes and make another 1 million electrification-ready.
- Create and Preserve 10,000 Supportive Housing Units - Governor Hochul’s Housing Plan embraces a “housing first” approach critical to ensuring that people experiencing homelessness have access to stable housing. This plan will create 7,000 units of supportive housing and preserve 3,000 units over the next five years — providing 10,000 units in all to further prevent homelessness and serve vulnerable and at-risk populations, including homeless veterans and their families; victims of domestic violence; elderly seniors; young adults with histories of incarceration, homelessness, or foster care; chronically homeless individuals and families; individuals with intellectual or development disabilities; individuals reentering the community from prison; and people living with HIV or AIDS, serious mental illness, and/or substance use disorders.
- Spur Innovation in Affordable Housing - Governor Hochul will initiate a pilot program for affordable housing innovation, supporting projects that take a dramatic new approach to construction in an effort to reduce costs. Innovative construction projects for the pilot could include approaches such as modular net-zero housing production, multi-family buildings using mass timber framing, and construction utilizing 3D printing, among others.
- Ease Restrictions on Converting Hotels and Offices to Residential Uses - Governor Hochul will propose legislation to facilitate conversions in the following manner:
- Hotel Conversions: Any Class B hotel located within (or within 800 feet of) a residential zoning district can use the existing certificate of occupancy for permanent residences, as long as the units are subject to applicable rent stabilization laws and agreements. Alterations must follow regulations for Class B hotels.
- Office Conversions: Governor Hochul will remove the 12.0 maximum residential FAR in New York City, facilitating the conversion of 133 office buildings to residential use (while also supporting housing production).
- Additionally, until December 2027, office-to-residential conversions of buildings constructed before 1980 or any applicable buildings located south of 60th Street in Manhattan may be allowed. The legislation will also ease conversion through waivers of specific regulations.
- Weatherize and Electrify New York’s Housing Stock - The State will implement measures to support the creation of 2 million electrified or electrification-ready homes by 2030. The Housing Plan includes $250 million (in addition to federal funds) to support this goal, with a target of 50,000 units directly funded to be electrified through the plan. As part of the Housing Plan, Governor Hochul will invest in other initiatives to weatherize and electrify New York’s housing stock.
- Promote Alternatives to Institutional Settings for Seniors - Governor Hochul will create affordable and permanent supportive housing units for seniors who might otherwise need to reside in a nursing home or other institutional setting. Additionally, to keep pace with this need as the state's population ages, capital funding will provide permanent senior supportive housing units annually and a larger number of affordable housing units available to seniors.
- Provide Individuals with Supportive Recovery Housing - This proposal will direct OASAS to create a voluntary certification process for recovery-supportive housing that provides substance-free environments and mutual support for individuals engaged in the recovery process. Certification would involve inspection, record-keeping, and operational standards for recovery homes.
- Make a $10 Billion Investment in Healthcare and Support Wages for Workers - Governor Hochul will make more than a $10 billion, multi-year investment in healthcare, including more than $4 billion to support wages and bonuses for healthcare workers. Key components of this multi-year investment include:
- $2 billion to support healthcare and mental hygiene worker retention bonuses, with up to $3,000 bonuses going to full-time workers who remain in their positions for one year, and pro-rated bonuses for those working fewer hours.
- $500 million for Cost of Living Adjustments (COLAs) to help raise wages for human services workers.
- Other investments in workforce and healthcare access and delivery
The Network looks to have more information on the $10 billion investment once the budget is released.
The Governor’s Executive Budget is expected to be released on January 18th. We will send out a budget analysis when it comes out and look forward to continuing our collective advocacy work to ensure these critical programs are funded in the final budget on April 1.
Hochul Vows to Lift Economy, Lure Health Workers and Add a Transit Link
Hochul Rolls Out Five-Year Plan to Produce 100,000 Affordable Homes