Saying the town’s application for relief from an affordable housing law does not amount to a “contested case” under Connecticut law—and therefore their own denial of that application is not appealable—state officials on Friday filed a motion to dismiss the municipal government’s lawsuit against the Department of Housing. The town applied last July for four years of relief from the state affordable housing law commonly known by its statute number, 8-30g. In towns that cannot meet a threshold whereby 10% of all housing stock qualifies as “affordable,” applicants for housing developments where a certain percentage of units are set aside at affordable rates may appeal to the state after they’re denied by a local Planning & Zoning Commission.
The town had qualified for a four-year moratorium in 2017, with the denser redevelopment of the New Canaan Housing Authority-owned apartments on Millport Avenue, and hoped to qualify for another through the redevelopment of the Canaan Parish complex at Lakeview Avenue and Route 123. Yet financing difficulties with the project emerged in April 2019, and then the COVID-19 pandemic caused further delays, officials have said.
As a result, the window opened for 8-30g applications here in mid-2021. Since February 2022, New Canaan has received three such applications.