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The debate over how to properly foster and maintain affordable housing has remained a longstanding, contentious issue in Massachusetts government. For the past thirty years, this debate has crystallized and regularly centered on Chapter 40B, Massachusetts’s affordable housing law. Recent executive, legislative, and private proposals, coupled with extraordinary increases in housing costs, have resulted in growing concerns over the effectiveness of 40B and the correct method, if any, of fixing its deficiencies. This Note examines these proposals as well as affordable housing efforts in other parts of the country and argues that Massachusetts’s affordable housing crisis will only be solved if the State legislature replaces 40B’s arbitrary housing quotas with new initiatives that create enough housing to meet demand and new incentives that encourage municipalities and the private sector to join in its efforts.

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Housing Law Commons