What you need to know: “Faith Based Affordable Housing Act”

The First Hungarian Reformed Church

FRIENDS has been collaborating with other preservation organizations to voice concerns regarding the “Faith Based Affordable Housing Act,” which is being introduced to State Legislature. The Act was not included in the "housing package" part of the New York State FY 2025 Budget but it is still making its way through Albany. This legislation would allow faith-based institutions to build affordable housing on their campuses, and those institutions with landmarked properties to bypass the Landmarks Preservation Commission's review process for alterations or demolition, provided they built some affordable housing.

FRIENDS is concerned that this bill would allow for the demolition and alteration of landmarked structures, while also creating a precedent for developers to gain exemption from the Landmarks Law.

Overall, while the idea of allowing faith-based institutions to build affordable housing on their properties is commendable, it is essential to ensure that proper oversight and protection measures are in place to safeguard landmarked structures and preserve the integrity of historical sites in New York City. It is important to strike a balance between promoting affordable housing and maintaining the city's rich architectural heritage.

Our concerns were communicated to lawmakers in a letter on April 1, 2024.


For news coverage of the bill, you can visit the following links:

  1. Long Island towns, villages and school officials unite against state's faith-based affordable housing proposal
  2. Pretend Solutions to New York’s Housing Crisis 
  3. Opinion: The Hidden Consequences of the Faith-Based Affordable Housing Act