Local Government Accountability Project

Local Government Accountability Project (LGAP)

The citizens of each City and County in Oregon look to their respective local government for leadership in affordable housing and residential development.  However, a growing number of residents, housing professionals, planners and engineers feel that local government in Oregon has lost its way.  Rather than working with the housing community to reach affordable solutions, some local governments have lost their way, using funds inappropriately, placating NIMBY’s and prescribing design standards.  Why does local government see the private housing industry as its enemy?  Why is local government incapable of understanding the time/value of money?

The members of Affordable Oregon feel it’s time to reign in local government and expose its practices and their effect on affordability.  While we believe that local governments can be an excellent partner and resource in the development of housing affordability, our current local regimes need to be held accountable for their actions.

To carry out this goal, we have recently completed the  2018 Local Government Accountability Project (LGAP).  The LGAP compiles both empirical and anecdotal information on select local governments and compares them to one another.  Ranking will occur at least annually and may be updated on a more regular basis depending on changes with each local government as they occur.

Criteria includes:

  • Time to market. How long is it taking to get a project from application submittal to a finished product.
  • Cost of processing.   Including all applicable fees, system development charges, and complexity of submittal requirements.
  • Difficulty of application process.  Including what is considered a completed application, cooperation among jurisdictional partners in the preapplication process and the helpfulness of staff.
  • Planning Commission effectiveness.  Is the Planning Commission a truly independent body checking the local government AND the project or is it a rubber stamp for bureaucracy?
  • Local jurisdiction effectiveness.  How engaged in the process is the council and/or mayor in advocating for affordability and holding their management responsible for their actions.
  • Local jurisdiction management and staff attitude toward residential development.  Does the jurisdiction treat development like a piggy bank or does it welcome and support growth that will lead to affordability?

 

The 2018 Final LGAP Study LINK

If you are interested in joining the LGAP process for 2019, please contact us here.