Assembly GOP Champions Housing Legislation

Assembly Republican took steps to address Wisconsin’s growing housing shortage by passing a series of bills that provide more housing options for workers. We are committed to keeping our state a great place to raise a family, work and play. Rep. Rob Brooks (R-Saukville) authored several of the bills and released a statement.

“As a realtor for more than twenty-five years, I have witnessed, first-hand, the devastating impact of Wisconsin’s affordable housing shortage on our local communities. A lack of affordable workforce housing units has made Wisconsin an unattractive destination for job seekers and businesses,” Representative Brooks stated.

According to a 2019 report entitled, “Falling Behind: Addressing Wisconsin’s Workforce Housing Shortage,” communities throughout Wisconsin are facing severe housing shortages. In fact, since 2012, Wisconsin has created seventy-five percent fewer lots and fifty-five percent fewer homes than pre-recession averages.

“Streamlining and reducing regulation is of paramount importance and will help reduce the cost of development and home prices. One of the bills I authored, LRB-4681 drastically reduces the regulatory burdens that are hampering developers and local communities. In addition to the regulatory burden, the lack of fair and equitable assessment practices has precipitated an exponential increase in housing costs. LRB-4326 addresses many of these disparities,” Representative Brooks stated.

The National Association of Home Builders estimates that excessive and outmoded regulations add $93,870 to the final sale of the home—or increase the price of a home by 23.8 percent. Examples of this include zoning requirements, residential use requirements, bureaucratic approval processes and tax assessment ambiguities.

“It is a pleasure to work with my colleagues on one of the most consequential issues facing Wisconsin communities: a lack of affordable workforce housing. The bills contained in this package not only encourage the construction, restoration, and renovation of housing units through the expansion of tax credits, but once again make Wisconsin an attractive place to live, work, own a home and raise a family,” Representative Brooks stated.

Included in the package of bills are reforms designed to reduce regulations and make it easier for Wisconsinites to own a home.