Builders Split Over Ban

Homebuilders may oppose a building moratorium at a time like this, but Pennsylvania Rep. Robert Freeman (D-Northampton) has not let up on his efforts to enact one to give communities a break from development and to discourage sprawl.
March 4, 2009, 1pm PST | Judy Chang
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"'It's important for us to stimulate our economy, so I'd be glad to get the home builders back to work,' Freeman said in a recent interview.

He just wants to ensure that when the orders for new houses start pouring in again, communities have a way to temporarily stop the bulldozers if they do not have adequate growth plans and ordinances in place.

'It gives the opportunity for those folks who have been feeling the pressure from development to take a breather,' Freeman said of moratoriums.

Municipalities currently have the right to reject a development proposal if it does not meet local land-use requirements. But they cannot simply declare that no building can occur if in fact there is room to accommodate it. Freeman wants to give them the temporary right to do so - but only if a town determines that it is overwhelmed by development and that its growth plans, ordinances, and zoning are inadequate to address that crush."

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Published on Sunday, March 1, 2009 in Philadelphia Inquirer
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