Newton Fair Housing Committee

Mission

The Committee's mission is to promote and support the City of Newton's efforts to be a diverse and welcoming community with housing choices and opportunities free from housing discrimination. Acting in an advisory capacity to the Mayor, the Board of Aldermen, and all applicable City departments, boards, and committees, the Committee aims to assure that policies and practices relating to fair housing are interwoven into the operations and activities of the City as well as the fabric of the community. As part of its mission, the Committee assists the City in meeting its duties to affirmatively further fair housing within Newton.

For More information on fair housing, visit the City of Newton's Fair Housing Website.

Membership

The Committee shall consist of eleven (11) members appointed by the Mayor, who shall serve for renewable terms of three (3) years each or until their successors shall take office. The initial appointments shall be for staggered terms as follows: three appointees shall serve for a one year term; four appointees shall serve for a two year term; and four appointees shall serve for a three year term.

Members shall be residents of the city or representatives of City based institutions, organizations, and businesses that serve the housing needs of Newton residents, and shall be persons interested in promoting the Committee's mission. The membership shall reflect the diversity of persons who are protected by civil rights laws, and shall include one or more persons with expertise in fair housing and civil rights laws. At least three (3) of the members shall be drawn from the Newton Housing Partnership, Newton Human Rights Commission, and Mayor's Committee for People with Disabilities. The balance of the membership shall be drawn from the Newton Housing Authority, Community Preservation Committee, realtors, lenders, housing providers or landlords, housing developers, and social service providers or citizen advocates.

Current Members 

Role of the Fair Housing Committee

In carrying out its purpose and mission, the Committee shall perform the following activities:

  • Promote, educate and advocate for fair housing in the community;
  • Assist in and advise on the coordination of the fair housing- related activities of key City boards and departments (such as the Newton Housing Partnership, the Newton Housing Authority, the Community Preservation Committee, the Planning and Development Board, the Planning and Development Department and the Inspectional Services Department) so that City housing activities are carried out with a consistent civil rights focus;
  • Review and comment on the City's Consolidated Annual Performance and Evaluation Report (CAPER);
  • Evaluate and recommend means towards accomplishing consistency in fair housing policy decisions within the City and its programs concerning such matters as local resident selection preferences, affirmative fair housing marketing of City housing programs, development of affordable housing, and civil rights compliance within City housing programs;
  • Assist and advise the City in meeting its obligations under the City's Analysis of Impediments to Fair Housing Choice and accomplishing its fair housing planning objectives (including implementing the Fair Housing Action Plan);
  • Assist and advise the City to help assure that fair housing objectives are identified and integrated across City departments;
  • Assist and advise the City in seeking financial resources and establishing outside partnerships to further fair housing objectives;
  • Link the work of the City to regional fair housing activities

Reports and Plans

  • Architectural Accessibility Action Plan (2012). The Action Plan identifies priorities for action that stem from the recommendations made by Ramping Up: Planning for a More Accessible Newton that, if implemented, will become significant steps in eliminating impediments to fair housing choice in Newton for people with disabilities. The Action Plan organizes these priorities by identifying action steps for implementation including the role(s) of the Newton Fair Housing Committee, and by identifying and prioritizing other parties whose involvement is essential in ensuring successful implementation.
  • Ramping Up: Planning for a More Accessible Newton (2011) 

Meeting Schedule

The Fair Housing Committee meets the first Wednesday of every month at 8:00 a.m. in the Planning and Development Department conference room in City Hall. To confirm a meeting date, please contact Malcolm Lucas, Housing Planner, at (617) 796-1149 or mlucas@newtonma.gov.

The location of this meeting is handicap accessible and reasonable accommodations will be provided to persons requiring assistance. If you need a special accommodation, please contact John Lojek at 617-796-1064 at least two days before the meeting. For Telecommunications Relay Service dial 711.

Upcoming agenda for May 6, 2015 meeting

Contact Us

If you would like more information, please contact Malcolm Lucas, Housing Planner, at (617) 796-1149 or mlucas@newtonma.gov.

If you think you have been discriminated against, contact the Newton Human Rights Commission and File a Complaint. Your claim will be reviewed and investigated, and if appropriate, the Commission will try to resolve it by working directly with both sides.

NOTE: complaints of housing discrimination must be filed with the Newton Human Rights Commission within 300 days of the most recent violation, which is the same time limit under Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination (MCAD).

Housing Discrimination Number: 617-796-1283 TDD/TTY 617-796-1089 ADA voicemail 617-796-1281

For more resources on affordable for-sale and rental housing, please visit Affordable Housing Resources and Affordable Housing Opportunities

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