On Feb. 3, Gov. Maura Healey convened the first meeting of a new task force that will help determine the structure of a new housing secretariat and inform the process of filling the position.

The 17-member Housing Working Group, created by an executive order that Healey signed on Jan. 20, is chaired by Lt. Gov. Kim Driscoll and includes Economic Development Secretary Yvonne Hao and Administration and Finance Secretary Matthew Gorzkowicz.

Municipal leaders chosen for the task force are Newton Mayor Ruthanne Fuller, Worcester City Manager Eric Batista, and Provincetown Town Manager Alex Morse. The group’s 11 other members include housing advocates, developers and housing finance organization leaders.

Healey has pledged to file legislation to create a new housing secretariat within her first 100 days of office. The Housing Working Group will study the many factors involved in creating a strong Executive Office of Housing to help reach the goal of providing safe, accessible and affordable housing for all residents. The group has until Feb. 19 to submit a written report on its findings to the governor.

The Department of Housing and Community Development has not functioned as a separate entity since 1991, having been folded into other executive offices — transportation, environment and, most recently, economic development.

Healey has identified housing as one of her top priorities, saying she is concerned that high housing prices and low inventory will affect the long-term economic competitiveness of the state.

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