Commonwealth of Massachusetts
Citizens' Guide to State Services

Published by
William Francis Galvin
Secretary of the Commonwealth
Citizen Information Service

Housing/Community Development: Appeals

J3 Housing Appeals Committee
Department of Housing and Community Development
100 Cambridge Street, Suite 300
Boston, MA 02114
Tel: 617-573-1520
Fax: 617-573-1515
www.mass.gov/dhcd/

Under Massachusetts General Law Chapter 40B:20-23, the "anti-snob" zoning act, also known as the comprehensive permit law, it is possible for a developer including locally based non-profit organizations to apply to the local zoning board of appeals for a comprehensive permit to build subsidized housing if the community does not have a minimum amount of such housing as delineated in the act. If the board turns down the request or makes building the houses economically unfeasible, the developer can appeal to the Housing Appeals Committee which will hear the case, review the local decision, and decide whether or not to override the community's zoning and other local regulations and issue the permit.  Their Office of Local and Regional Planning handles zoning questions.


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