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Massachusetts pulls seawall grant from Milton after voters reject MBTA zoning plan

Milton loses state grant after voters reject MBTA Communities Act
Milton loses state grant after voters reject MBTA Communities Act 00:34

MILTON - Massachusetts Gov. Maura Healey's administration is following through on its threat to pull funding from Milton a week after voters there rejected the MBTA Communities Act zoning plan - putting the town in violation of state law.

Housing and Livable Communities Secretary Ed Augustus sent a letter to the town administrator on Wednesday, saying Milton is no longer eligible for a $140,800 grant for improvements to the seawall at Milton Landing, and a new dock. 

"Milton's current non-compliant status means the town will begin losing out on significant grant funding from the state, effective immediately," he wrote.

Milton cannot receive MassWorks and HousingWorks grants, and will be at competitive disadvantage for others, Augustus said.

Milton voted down MBTA Communities Act

The MBTA Communities Act, signed into law by former Gov. Charlie Baker, made it mandatory for cities and towns near rapid transit stops to zone for multi-family housing. Augustus said abiding by the law is key to combating the housing affordability crisis in Massachusetts. 

The plan in Milton would have allowed for at least 2,461 new housing units in the town with a population of about 28,000. Opponents argued that the trolley that runs through Mattapan and Milton shouldn't count as "rapid" transit. 

Other communities like Braintree and Newton also saw opposition to the zoning requirements, but worked with the state to achieve compliance. Augustus said in his letter that he hopes Milton can do the same. 

"The administration is hopeful that we can work together on a new plan that will bring the town into compliance," he wrote.

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