Photo by Will Crooks/Greenville Journal.

Greenville City Council has passed a resolution indicating it supports a state Senate bill that would allow South Carolina cities and counties to enact inclusionary zoning policies to increase affordable housing.

A bill sponsored by Sen. Marlon Kimpson, D-Charleston, would allow municipalities and counties to require that a certain percentage of housing units within a multifamily structure or single-family development be sold or rented as affordable housing.

The bill, which is currently in the Senate Judiciary Committee, would limit the required number of affordable units to 30 percent. Under the proposal, the provision would apply to multifamily or single-family developments with five or more housing units.

Kimpson’s bill also allows developers the option to pay a fee in lieu rather than to include affordable units within their development.

In return for the affordable housing units, developers could get incentives such as density adjustments, modification of height, and floor area or whole or partial waivers of system development charges and impact or permit fees.

Greenville City Council recently approved $2 million of the city’s fund balance to help provide more affordable housing. The city has a shortage of more than 2,500 affordable housing units. CZB, an Alexandria, Va.-based consultant, said it would take $10 million a year for 25 years for the city to catch up to demand.

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