City leaders in Lakewood scrapped a Monday night vote on a measure that would strictly limit housing growth after a resident filed a challenge about the legitimacy of a proposed citizen’s initiative behind the effort.
Steve Dorman, vice chairman of the Jefferson County Republican Party, says in his complaint to the city clerk that the proposed ballot measure that would cap annual housing growth at 1 percent of existing units lacks a “completely accurate and thorough summary” of the issue at hand and directly violates private property rights and the Colorado and U.S. constitutions.
He also claims that people who circulated the petition hadn’t properly sworn to the petition’s contents when they went out gathering signatures.
In July, the Lakewood clerk determined that there were sufficient signatures to move the measure to the ballot. City Council was scheduled to either approve the housing growth measure Monday night or let it go to a vote of the people in November.
A hearing on Dorman’s challenge has been scheduled for Wednesday.
The proposed ordinance would implement a system that limits permit requests for new dwelling units and would require a City Council vote to approve or reject projects of 40 or more housing units.
The proposal comes at a time when rents in the Denver area — especially in areas within and just beyond the city limits — are soaring and developers are working to keep up with demand. A massive shortage of construction workers is making things worse.