NJ Supreme Court Strikes Down COAH’s Third Round Rules

On Thursday, the N.J. Supreme Court held that regulations adopted by the Council on Affordable Housing (COAH) to address the most recent round of municipal affordable housing obligations, commonly referred to as the “Third Round Rules,” were at odds with the Fair Housing Act (FHA).

In affirming, with modifications, the prior decision of the Appellate Division, the Court rejected COAH’s use of the “growth share” methodology set forth in the Third Round Rules. The Court is requiring COAH within a five month deadline to adopt new rules consistent with the FHA based upon the prior rounds’ method of allocating fair share obligations among municipalities. By requiring COAH to issue new rules and by inviting the Legislature to consider “alternative approaches” to promote affordable housing production , this decision will likely bring issues of affordable housing back into the legislative and regulatory arenas.

Click here for an analysis by Phil Morin, Esq. which discusses the decision and its likely impact to the multifamily community.