Panelists at housing hearing call for public funding, regulatory reform
Developers are responding, but rising costs and interest rates are impeding their catch-up efforts. The panelists spanned the gamut from small nonprofits to large for-profit companies. They agreed unanimously that under current economic and regulatory conditions, projects serving the very upper end of the market are the only ones that can be built without subsidies.
Sturla asked if the issue with prevailing wage is the reporting requirements, rather than the wage cost itself. That’s part of it, said Ben Lesher, president of Parcel B Development Co.: prevailing wage limits the pool of subcontractors to those who are willing to deal with that level of regulatory intrusiveness. Similarly, he said, mandatory bidding can be a deal-breaker for developers who already have established relationships with contractors they know and trust.