Marshfield: Housing Partnership Coordinator discusses governor’s regional housing authority proposal

Governor Deval Patrick has proposed to eliminate all local housing authorities and replace them with regional housing authorities.

The controversial proposal would do away the commonwealth’s 240 local housing authorities and replace them with 6 regional boards, consisting of 9 members each and appointed by the governor.

City and town officials would appoint a 5 member advisory board to advise the regional authorities.

The Patrick administration estimates the move could save $10 million a year in administrative costs and provide greater transparency and accountability.

Marshfield Housing Partnership Coordinator Jack Mather said the town needs to carefully weigh the implications of the proposal.

“Right now I think that it’s important that towns like Marshfield and others carefully look at what the implications are for the town, its ability to provide oversight for the housing authority, its ability to elect, or appoint, or remove a local official if there’s a problem, as opposed to this larger entity and share their thoughts and feelings with their legislators, as they prepare to deal with the legislation that’s going to come before them,” Mather explained.

Mather said he’ll request a meeting between selectmen, Marshfield’s housing authority board and housing partnership, State Representative Jim Cantwell and Senator Bob Hedlund, to discuss the issue.

About John Penny

John Penny is a town news reporter at WATD. He primarily covers stories in the towns of Marshfield, Cohasset, Scituate, Norwell, Hingham, Abington and Quincy.