NEAC, the coordinating body for all NAACP branches in New England, has voted unanimously to support Massachusetts Bills H.1377 and S.921 An Act empowering cities and towns to support affordable housing with a fee on certain real estate transactions enabling Massachusetts Branches, including Berkshire County Branch, to publicly support its passage.

These sister bills, known as Local Option Transfer Fees (and distinguished from both the proverbial “mansion tax” and the “deed excise tax”), would allow municipalities across the Commonwealth to raise capital for Municipal Affordable Housing Trust Funds, by placing a fee of 0.5 – 2.0 percent on certain single family home transactions.

 In Berkshire County capitalizing on the increasingly strong 2nd family home and work-from home relocation markets, to provide funds for housing construction will create more affordable rental housing choice for People of Color. This is crucial to avoiding long term consequences of pandemic-induced housing instability.

Fact Sheet

The Branch is also joined by several officials, organizations, and municipalities in its testimony: State Representative Tricia Farley-Bouvier, Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity, Berkshire Housing Services Inc., Berkshire Housing Development Corporation, Construct Inc., Westside Legends, Roots & Dreams and Mustard Seeds Inc., Manos Unidas Multicultural Educational Cooperative , and Mayor Tom Bernard of North Adams.
Please contact Sen. Chair Keenan, Vice Chair Jelen and House Chair Arciero, Vice Chair Rogers, and urge them to favorably report out H.1377 and S.868  “An Act empowering cities and towns to impose a fee on certain real estate transactions to support affordable housing.”

Deadline is Friday, October 29.