Park City, pledging to push housing, prepares a blue ribbon panel | ParkRecord.com

Park City, pledging to push housing, prepares a blue ribbon panel

Jay Hamburger THE PARK RECORD

Park City leaders, pledging that work force or otherwise affordable housing is a City Hall priority, intend to seat a panel in coming weeks to address the issue over the winter.

The Blue Ribbon Housing Commission will delve into a range of issues regarding the municipal government’s programs and policies. It will work alongside City Hall staffers.

Phyllis Robinson, the community and public affairs manager at City Hall, said the panel is expected to explore the municipal government’s rules outlining a developer’s work force or affordable housing requirements. The Blue Ribbon Housing Commission could research whether the requirements should be attached to a broader range of developments. The rules currently only require the housing in larger projects.

She said the group could also research City Hall’s detailed development rules, which are outlined in a document known as the Land Management Code, to determine whether the rules encourage a diverse housing stock. The panel is expected to forward a set of recommendations to Mayor Jack Thomas and the Park City Council.

The Blue Ribbon Housing Commission will involve up to nine people. They will serve a six-month term. The work is anticipated to be completed during the term. Someone must be a Park City resident and a registered voter to be appointed. The City Council is expected to appoint members at a meeting in October, perhaps on Oct. 22. The term runs until March 31.

The Blue Ribbon Housing Commission is scheduled to meet for the first time on Oct. 26. Information posted on the City Hall website indicates the group will likely meet every two weeks at the beginning.

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The creation of the panel comes as City Hall pursues a housing program more aggressively than at some points in the past. The elected officials have indicated housing and transportation are the two priorities for the year.

Park City leaders have long pursued housing programs, saying they are critical in a community where much of the work force is priced out of the resort-driven real estate market. They argue that housing opportunities for the work force benefit Park City by ensuring socioeconomic diversity and reducing commuter traffic.

The applications inquire about someone’s interest in the panel, someone’s relevant background and what someone "sees as immediate needs for the City related to community housing needs." Other questions include the applicant’s employment status, their age, gender and race. Officials also want to learn whether someone rents or owns their residence, their time in Park City and household income.

Applications for the Blue Ribbon Housing Commission are available on the City Hall website, http://www.parkcity.org . Select the link under the News section of the front page of the website. More information is also available on the website.