Now is the time to ask lawmakers to prioritize Capital Budget investments that increase opportunity for affordable housing and shelter. The Governor proposed historic investments in his Capital Budget and we need the legislature to do the same thing. Key Capital Budget priorities are:
$240 million for the Housing Trust Fund.
The Housing Trust Fund invests in affordable homes statewide, including Permanent Supportive Housing. Last year, the Housing Trust Fund received many more applications than it was able to accept due to limited funding. But without the Housing Trust Fund, most affordable housing isn’t able to proceed – especially when the project intends to build homes for extremely low and very low income households.
$10 million to preserve affordable housing at risk of loss.
The loss of affordable housing is a significant problem that threatens to displace people from their homes and reduce our state’s affordable housing portfolio. The loss of affordable housing, such as USDA funded housing in rural Washington, happens when the use restrictions expire that require affordable rents. A new $10 million from the Capital Budget will allow affordable housing providers to quickly step in to purchase the properties and keep them affordable.
$70 million for the rapid acquisition of properties newly for sale due to the economic downturn.
The recession offers a unique opportunity to purchase properties newly for sale – such as hotels or multifamily housing – which can be converted to shelter or affordable housing. Washington missed an opportunity during the great recession to purchase properties, but we can create a silver lining in the current one by creating a rapid acquisition fund to increase shelter and affordable housing.
$40 million for enhanced shelter capacity grants.
At time when Washington has lost shelter beds during a pandemic – strategic investments in shelter are sorely needed. Enhanced shelter capacity grants would help providers shelter individuals experiencing chronic homelessness by funding new shelter beds and funding capital needs for existing shelter beds.
Use the form on the right to urge your lawmakers to make these investments! THANK YOU!