MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Md. (WDVM) — The Montgomery County Council enacted a new bill to address the county’s affordable housing issue.

Bill 26-21 was introduced in June 2021 by Councilmember Hans Riemer, Chair of the Planning, Housing, and Economic Development Committee, and Councilmember Andrew Friedson.

The County Payment in Lieu of Taxes exemption is basically a tax abatement, created to assist affordable housing.

Once accepted by state law, local governments enter into negotiated arrangements with rental property owners to reduce the expense of County real property and special area taxes.

As a result, the property owner agrees to issue low-income individuals affordable housing.

“This legislation is designed to bring more certainty about county support to affordable housing providers as well as help affordable housing providers successfully compete in a fast-moving market,” said Councilmember Hans Riemer. “With the legislation, mission-driven housing providers looking to buy a building will know that a share of their financing will be secure. The Purple Line corridor is a great example of a location where this could be especially helpful.”

“We must act aggressively to address the housing affordability crisis in our County and in our region,” Councilmember Andrew Friedson said. “Government alone cannot provide enough affordable housing to serve our residents’ needs. This measure builds on our partnerships with nonprofit affordable housing providers to add certainty and lower the costs of building new, quality affordable housing so more people can live in and be part of our community.”

The Council staff report for the bill can be viewed here.