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Will the cost of housing tank the Massachusetts economy?


Sometimes, perfect jobs slip away. Which is what happened to Suzanne Scallion.

Scallion had a job she loved, in a town she loved. But it wasn’t enough. She needed somewhere to live. In April, Scallion announced she would step down as superintendent of Provincetown Schools, after nearly three years in the role.

Scallion rented for two of the winters that she worked in Provincetown, and lived in her RV for two summers. The rest of the time, she commuted from Yarmouth, more than an hour’s drive each way.

“My dream was that I would one day live in Provincetown,” Scallion said , “but clearly there’s a crisis in the community around housing and I was impacted by it.”

And she’s got lots of company. In communities across the state, there are tens of thousands of stories that echo Scallion’s — from teachers, firefighters, lab managers, engineers, nurses, and pretty much every other profession you can imagine.

Boston University economics professor Katherine Einstein told me that when her department searches for a new professor, house prices always come up. “And for folks who make very good — but not biotech executive — salaries at Boston University, they can’t afford to buy what they could in […]

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