HomeSuburbanSuburban NewsSayreville affordable housing ordinances introduced

Sayreville affordable housing ordinances introduced

SAYREVILLE – Two ordinances intended to assist Sayreville in reaching its necessary amount of affordable units have been introduced by the Borough Council.

The council voted 5-1 to re-introduce an ordinance during its Sept. 11 meeting that will amend the borough’s affordable housing ordinance, and voted to introduce an ordinance that will permit projects that have affordable units in their zone.

Council President Daniel Buchanan and council members Steven Grillo, Victoria Kilpatrick, Ricci Melendez and Mary Novak voted “yes” on introducing the affordable housing amendment ordinance; Councilman Pat Lembo voted “no”. The vote on introducing the inclusionary multi-family dwellings ordinance was unanimously in the affirmative.

Members of the council stated a reason they voted in favor of introduction was to provide residents the opportunity to speak on the ordinances at a public hearing, which is scheduled for Sept. 25. The council may adopt the ordinances that evening.

As the result of a settlement agreement, Sayreville is required to have 785 affordable units.

The ordinance permitting the affordable housing projects defines the projects as inclusionary multi-family dwellings, which are market-rate housing dwellings that have 15 percent of their units designated as affordable.

If adopted, the inclusionary multi-family dwellings ordinance will permit Camelot at Sayreville I, which will have 173 units (26 affordable), and Camelot at Sayreville II, which will have 300 units (45 affordable). Both projects are being developed by Kaplan Properties, which filed as an intervener in Sayreville’s litigation with New Jersey Superior Court over its affordable housing obligations.

In addition to the Kaplan projects, a previous version of the ordinance included Cross Avenue/National Lead Site, which will have 163 units (24 affordable), and River Road Development Site, which will have 160 units (24 affordable), as projects intended to assist the borough in meeting its obligations. These projects are not in the current version of the ordinance that the council may adopt.

The ordinance to amend the borough’s affordable housing ordinance was originally introduced by the council on May 22. The original inclusionary multi-family dwellings ordinance, which included the Cross Avenue/National Lead Site and the River Road Development Site, was also introduced on that date by the council.

The affordable housing amendment ordinance and the inclusionary multi-family dwellings ordinance, with the Cross Avenue/National Lead Site and the River Road Development Site projects removed, reappeared before the council on Aug. 21 after those ordinances were recommended by Planning Board on Aug. 2.

The council made further amendments to the inclusionary multi-family dwellings ordinance to remove one section not related to the Kaplan projects and have the bulk variances be consistent with the borough’s bulk standards at a minimum. Due to changes made, the current inclusionary multi-family dwellings ordinance is not considered to be the same as the original ordinance.

The council’s initial vote on introducing the inclusionary multi-family dwelling ordinance was also 5-1, with Lembo again casting the sole “no” vote, while Buchanan, Grillo, Kilpatrick, Melendez and Novak voted “yes”.

However, after the vote was taken, members of the council noticed that not all of the changes they requested in regards to bulk standards were not incorporated in the ordinance.

Ultimately, on the suggestion of Borough Attorney Michael DuPont, the council unanimously voted to withdraw the introduced ordinance, and then introduced the ordinance with all the requested amendments incorporated.

When the two ordinances were originally introduced in May, the council also introduced an ordinance to add a new section to the borough’s development fee ordinance and an ordinance to permit affordable accessory apartments in the office/services overlay zone. Buchanan and Kilpatrick questioned why not all of the ordinances had reappeared before the council, with Kilpatrick arguing that the other two ordinances were beneficial for the borough.

“What I’m being told is the only thing that gets precedence here and what has to come before us is what the judge orders us to do,” Kilpatrick said. “That turns around and gets shoved down our throat, but the two things here that would be beneficial to the town have not come before us, is not being discussed now at the Planning Board and those are the two smartest things to put through.”

DuPont said he agreed with Kilpatrick and would work toward having the development fee ordinance and the office/services overlay zone ordinance brought up on Sept. 25.

The proposed affordable housing plan has been a source of concern for residents because, if approved, it will create additional market rate units apart from the required affordable units. Residents have spoken about the potential impacts that the additional residential units might create, such as the potential impact on the school district, traffic, taxes, open space, population density and safety.

Excluding The Pointe, an ongoing $2.2 billion retail/mixed-use project, 803 market-rate units with 141 affordable units are planned to be built in the borough.

Contact Matthew Sockol at

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