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Habitat may build house in Nevada City

Habitat for Humanity’s plans to build a house for a low-income family in Nevada City are forging ahead.

The Nevada City City Council voted 3-2 Monday to pursue a preliminary agreement with the nonprofit to build a house on Searls Avenue. It would be the group’s first project in Nevada City.

Under the agreement, which the City Council could consider Nov. 12, Habitat could build a house for a low-income family on eight-tenths of an acre donated by Erickson Realty Ltd. of Beaverton, Ore.



Mayor David McKay and Vice Mayor Kerry Arnett said they voted against the motion because it did not include a deed restriction to make the house affordable in perpetuity. Habitat’s bylaws carry no such restrictions.

“It’s an excellent project,” McKay said before the vote, “yet it doesn’t get to the finish line.”




To build the house, a section of the land will have to be rezoned from open space to residential. Under Monday’s motion, the city could also agree to waive or defer some of the development fees.

The house will be Habitat’s ninth project in Nevada County since 1997, when the local chapter was created.

The house will cost $60,000 to build, said David Emanuel, a vice president of Habitat for Humanity.

Founded in 1976, Habitat for Humanity has built 125,000 houses in 82 countries.


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