The Tooele City Council approved an update to the moderate-income housing element of the Tooele City General Plan on Wednesday.
Tooele City Community Development Director Jim Bolser presented the element to the council.
The approval comes after the Tooele City Planning Commission moved forward with positive recommendation of a proposal to update the element at a planning commission meeting on Oct. 9.
The proposal was made by the commission to ensure the city’s General Plan is in compliance with Utah Senate Bill 34: Affordable Housing Modifications, which was passed in February 2019 and addressed as a statewide concern of moderate-income homes.
The bill requires cities to meet the following criteria: The first is to plan for housing for residents of all income levels and coordinate that housing with transportation access and employment centers.
The second requires that all cities now must choose from a list of 23 moderate income housing planning strategies and implement at least three of these strategies in their moderate income housing plans. Third requires 82 cities to adopt a moderate income housing plan, Tooele being one of the 82 cities. Fourth requires an annual report on housing plan implementation in 2020.
The amendment to the city’s General Plan approved by the commission at the Oct. 2 meeting addressed the second criterion of choosing from a list of 23 moderate income housing planning strategies and implementing at least three of them
At the Oct. 2 meeting, Tooele City Planning and Zoning Administrator Andrew Aagard listed the seven strategies the city is currently implementing, which include: rezoning for densities necessary to assure the production of moderate income housing, encouraging higher density or moderate income residential development near major transit and investment corridors, creating or allowing for reduced regulations related to Accessory Dwelling Units in residential zones, and applying for or partnering with an entity that applies for State or Federal funds or tax incentives to promote the construction of moderate income housing.
“We found that we already complied with seven, more than twice the number required by the state bill,” said Bolser at the Wednesday meeting. “Of the seven, we believe we actually qualify for more, but nonetheless we more than exceed the requirements from state law.”
The City Council unanimously approved the element to the plan. The approval by the City Council requires that the city now send its moderate-income housing element to the Utah Department of Workforce Services detailing the city’s compliance with SB34 and posted on the Tooele City website, tooelecity.org.