In an interview in his Town Hall office, Mr. Tesei said that local sentiment simply does not support the use of town resources for affordable housing. “Many people would argue, ‘Who’s subsidizing my housing?’ ” he said.
Contrary to popular media portrayals of Greenwich as a place inhabited solely by the rich, he added, the town has an economically diverse population as well as diverse housing stock. To support his point, Mr. Tesei printed out a list of about 100 properties available for rent at $1,050 to $2,500 a month. The list is maintained on the town’s Web site to aid municipal employees looking for housing.
As a percentage of its housing inventory, Greenwich actually has a higher level of affordable housing than some of its Fairfield County neighbors. About 5 percent of the housing inventory, or 1,230 units, qualifies as permanently affordable under state guidelines because it is either subsidized or subject to an affordability deed restriction. That’s about twice the percentage that exists in New Canaan or Darien.
Mr. Tesei is beginning to grow on me. And, although they’ve tried, low income housing advocates have never explained to my satisfaction why I should be taxed to accommodate another person’s choice of occupation, be it school teacher, policeman or welfare mom.
UPDATE: well I’ve heard from policemen, teachers and, assuming he is one, Fred the welfare mom. All are hurt that I don’t want to subsidize their housing. My point is, do what you want to do in life: be a cop, a teacher, a real estate agent or even an investment banker or welfare sponge. Each has its rewards: real estate agents and welfare moms have a lot of leisure time, for instance as do IBrs, these days, and each has its costs. Like, salary. You want to be an artist? Go for it, man, but don’t ask Fred to pay out of his pocket for your choice. Buy your own paint, rent your own garret.