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Provost Lieberman to appoint faculty housing study group

STANFORD -- A faculty committee will be established to evaluate faculty housing benefits at Stanford, Provost Gerald J. Lieberman told the Faculty Senate on Thursday, Jan. 7.

The committee, which Lieberman said would be appointed in consultation with the Faculty Senate Committee on Committees, will study the details of existing housing policies and programs and develop ideas about what form they should take in the future.

Among the issues Lieberman said the committee would explore:

  • How housing can better support recruitment and retention of young faculty.
  • Whether the housing allowance is effective and should be continued and whether it should be extended for rentals.
  • Whether current geographical restrictions for housing assistance are appropriate. The policy now requires faculty to purchase houses within a 15-mile radius of Hoover Tower to qualify for assistance.
  • What kind of housing developments Stanford should pursue.

On the last point, Lieberman noted that the University of California-Irvine has developed housing units in which the sale price is tied to the consumer price index, thus limiting appreciation and keeping the units affordable for a second or subsequent owner.

Stanford now offers to faculty two mortgage loan programs: a short-term down payment loan, and a low-interest, shared-appreciation loan for the term of the mortgage. Another program provides a taxable salary supplement to help faculty members deal with the Bay Area's high housing prices.

In recent months, some faculty have expressed concern about the programs and the stability of the local housing market.

Lieberman said a formal charge for the committee is still being developed.



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