Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Winnetka, Illinois Raises the Bar for Affordable Housing

The Chicago Tribune described a rather heated meeting in the village of Winnetka, a ghetto for the rich, which describes "affordable housing" as housing that is affordable to families making $75,000 a year!

"Housing is affordable to the people who can afford it. That is a simple thing," [Northfield resident June] O'Donoghue said. "I think you need a referendum for people to vote to see if they want to go through all this social engineering."

In recent weeks, the plan's opponents have said it amounts to "hand-outs" for people with lower income that could result in Section 8 housing, decreased property values and increased crime. Supporters have lashed out at the opposition as bigoted, arguing that the plan would allow teachers, clergy and other employees to live in the community in which they work.

The North Shore community of 12,000 reported a median home price last year of $1.1 million, while median household income is $201,650, according to data.

The proposed plan would apply to new developments, in which 15 percent of owner-occupied units must be affordable to households earning at least $75,000 per year, while 15 percent of rental units would be affordable to those earning at least $45,000.

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