Massachusetts bills & policies of interest
List of 2019-2020 endorsed bills

Zoning and Planning

Smart Growth Zoning | Housing Production

  • Establish a state equity task force to identify next steps on Lead sponsors: Rep. Vargas (with Rep. Decker) (H 1325), Sen. Chandler (S 780)
  • ​Pilot program to provide transit infrastructure incentives for multifamily housing production Rep. Garballey (H 1788), Sen. Chandler (S 779)
  • Local mediation of land use disputes and reasonable review standard for subdivision appeals Rep. Murray (H 1813), Sen. Chandler (within S 780)
  • Amending building code to allow tiny homes on foundations. Rep. Blais (H 2031), Sen. Hinds (S 1863)
  • We support the following bills led by the American Planning Association/MA and Massachusetts Association of Planning Directors: 1) Training program for zoning/planning board members. Rep. Honan (H 1802); 2) Site plan review. Rep. Honan (H 1289)
​Local Planning
  • Streamline master planning process and increase zoning consistency Rep. Ciccolo (H 180)Recognizing 21st century “form-based” codes Rep. Ciccolo (H 1768), Sen. Crighton (S 81)
  • Increase funding for local planning​
Accessory Dwelling Units (ADU)
  • Accessory apartments within the main structure of a single-family home. Rep. Hay (with Rep. Ciccolo) (H 1277), Sen. Cyr (S 788)​
Community Preservation Act (CPA)​
  • Increase the state match for Community Preservation Act communities by raising the deeds fee​​
Housing Choice Grants
  • Authorize funding for the Housing Choice grant program to reward communities for producing housing and adopting local zoning reforms

Equity and affordable housing

  • We are lead advocate for a local option for municipalities to offer property tax relief to seniors and/or lower income homeowners in exchange for a right of first refusal on the home when it is for sale so that it can be converted to affordable housing. Rep. Peake (H 2587), Sen. Chandler (S 1604)
  • Right to counsel for indigent tenants in eviction proceedings. Rep. Rogers (H 1537), Rep. Tyler (H3456), Sen. DIDomenico (S 913)
  • HOMES Act to seal court records in eviction proceedings. Rep. Moran (H 3566) Sen. Boncore (S 824)
  • Ban discriminatory zoning/permitting decisions. Rep. Barber (H 1344), Sen. Chang Diaz (S 781)
  • We support MACDC and MassINC in their advocacy for the Neighborhood Stabilization bill which includes a “spot blight rehabilitation” program for small scale residential projects and a capacity-building program focused on neighborhood stabilization. Rep. Cabral (H 177), Sen. Crighton (S 1627)

Climate and environment

  • Governor Baker’s proposal to raise the deeds excise tax for climate adaptation (Senate 10) & doubling increase to fund affordable housing; local option real estate transfer taxes for affordable housing; and a GreenWorks bonding program for climate change measures (H 3846)
  • Sustainable Development bill to ensure that state takes into account climate risks in its development decisions. CLF lead advocate. Peake (H 841) and Collins (S 79)
  • Preserve and restore natural lands that keep carbon in the landscape. The Nature Conservancy lead advocate. Peake (H 842) and Tarr (S 2014)
  • Expand Green Communities program to mitigate climate change. MAPC lead advocate. Dykema (H 2841) and Lewis (S 1987)
  • We are the lead advocate for promoting Open Space Residential Design (OSRD or cluster zoning) in residential subdivisions to preserve land conservation. Rep. Blais (H 1761), Sen. Cyr (S 787)
  • We also support the Conservation Law Foundation proposal for a local option program for property tax breaks on parcels used for urban agriculture. Rep. Malia (H 2551) Sen. Kennedy (S 1691)


Find the following transportation policies and opportunities at https://www.t4ma.org/fact_sheets

  • The Green Line Extension: Cambridge | Somerville | Medford

  • Autonomous Vehicles: Let's Solve - not Exacerbate - our Equity, Congestion and Climate Challenges

  • Bus Rapid Transit: Cost-Effective, High-Quality, Public Transportation

  • Complete Streets: Making Our Streets Safer for Everyone

  • The Gas Tax in Massachusetts: An Essential Tool for Funding Our Roads

  • Public Health and Transportation: Driving Health Equity with Better Transportation Policy

  • Regional Planning Agencies: Serving Municipalities Throughout Massachusetts

  • Regional Transit Authorities: Connecting Municipalities in Massachusetts

  • Smarter Tolling: It's Our Move, Massachusetts

  • Transportation and Climate Change: Advancing Resilient and Climate-Friendly Policies

  • Transportation Justice: Fostering a Transportation System that Works for Everyone

  • Vision Zero: Eliminating Transportation Injuries and Fatalities on Our Streets

Links to articles and case studies about
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