March 8, 2018

Affordable Housing Excise Tax Approved Unanimously

Following mild skepticism from some builders and strong support from community advocates, Medford City Councilors approved a construction tax that will fund new incentives to build more low- and middle-income housing within the city.

A tax of one-third of 1 percent on major construction, effective once the state approves a proposed expansion of Medfords city limits, is expected to add less than $1,000 to the average new home and generate a fund close to $500,000 using 2017 construction numbers, Medford Planning Director Matt Brinkley said Thursday night.

Some tax-averse councilors expressed surprise as they found themselves supporting the Construction Excise Tax, approved unanimously Thursday. Faced with a shortage of new housing and increasing demand in the city pushing up home prices and rents, councilors described the tax as a business-friendly move in the right direction.

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