By Lorraine Woellert | POLITICO
The Obama administration Monday is calling on cities and counties to rethink their zoning laws, saying that antiquated rules on construction, housing and land use are contributing to high rents and income inequality, and dragging down the U.S. economy as a whole.
City zoning battles usually are fought block by block, and the president’s involvement will create friction, particularly among environmental groups and the not-in-my-backyard crowd. But the White House jawboning is welcome news to many others, including mayors and builders increasingly foiled by community opposition to development.
The White House published a “toolkit” of economic evidence and policy fixes to help local political leaders fight back against the NIMBYs that tend to hold sway over municipal zoning meetings.
“I have to be honest, I almost thought this news was fake. First, the president of the United States issuing guidelines for local government land use decisions is surprising. Then to see the president’s guidelines advocate for less government intervention into developers’ business.”
~ Jordan Rose