Most meetings are being held in person, but some are still remote or virtual. Go to eastham-ma.gov/calendar-by-event-type/16 and click on the meeting you are interested in to learn about meeting locations and any remote options that may be offered.
Thursday, Dec. 2
- Board of Assessors, 9:30 a.m., Town Hall
- Nauset Schools Negotiations Subcommittee, 1 p.m., virtual
- Cultural Council, 6 p.m., Town Hall
Monday, Dec. 6
- Select Board, 5:30 p.m., Town Hall
Tuesday, Dec. 7
- Zoning Bylaw Task Force, 4:30 p.m.
- T-Time Development Committee, 5 p.m., Town Hall
Wednesday, Dec. 8
- Finance Committee, 5 p.m., Town Hall
- Recreation Commission, 5:30 p.m., virtual
Thursday, Dec. 9
- Affordable Housing Trust, 9 a.m., Town Hall
- Nauset Regional School Committee, 6 p.m., Virtual
Tips From a Housing Expert
Members of the Residential Zoning Task Force talked with Mary Waygan on Tuesday, hoping for insights on solving the housing shortage. Waygan is Yarmouth’s affordable housing and community development block grant program coordinator. She has worked for Yarmouth for 17 years and has helped raise the town’s stock of subsidized housing by 300 units.
Yarmouth has already adopted an inclusionary zoning bylaw, which Eastham will likely bring before voters at the next town meeting. Inclusionary zoning takes many forms but essentially requires builders to include some affordable units in every development.
Waygan explained that Yarmouth’s bylaw allows developers to fulfill that requirement with either onsite or offsite units, or by paying a fee to the town’s affordable housing trust. In Yarmouth a fee of $100,000 theoretically covers the cost of making a market-rate unit affordable to someone earning the area median income (AMI).
In Eastham, task force member Mary Nee pointed out, the difference between market-rate housing and an AMI affordable home is closer to $300,000 and would require a higher fee.
The task force and Waygan also discussed the town’s desire to provide housing to those earning between 80 and 120 percent of AMI. Massachusetts law encourage cities and town to have 10 percent of their housing stock designated as affordable. But only homes reserved for tenants earning 80 percent or below of AMI count towards this inventory, despite the fact that housing burdens exist for people earning more.
Still, Waygan explained that, in Yarmouth, the town pursues only housing that counts towards the state subsidized housing inventory goal. “That was a political decision,” she said, but it also has practical benefits. Waygan said that the Dept. of Housing and Community Development, which certifies units towards the inventory goal, has helped Yarmouth many times. Many developers are familiar with working within the state program, while so-called workforce housing is more nebulous territory, Waygan said.
Under New Management
The new owners of the Eastham Superette will take over the Route 6 grocery and liquor store starting Thursday, Dec. 2. Manan, Bhavya, and Jigar Patel reached a deal with previous owners Sarah and Eddie Wilcox this summer. The store was closed Wednesday as the two parties handled the transition. —Cam Blair