The $4 billion Washington State Capital Budget that was quickly passed January 18, 2018 — after being blocked the entire 2017 Legislative Session — includes a significant investment in affordable housing to address the state’s housing and homelessness crisis.
“We are thrilled that the State Legislature came to agreement on and passed a Capital Budget that includes $106.7 million for the Housing Trust Fund. There is no doubt that we’re facing a severe shortage of homes affordable to low-income households in communities all across Washington, and that the greatest impact of that shortage is increasing homelessness,” states the Washington Low Income Housing Alliance, whose advocacy was key to the bill’s passing.
“Lack of affordable housing is one of the biggest barriers people who have experienced homelessness face in our community.” ~Solid Ground President & CEO, Gordon McHenry, Jr.
Solid Ground President & CEO Gordon McHenry, Jr. says, “Lack of affordable housing is one of the biggest barriers people who have experienced homelessness face in our community. The Housing Trust Fund has a tremendous legacy in our state and is a key component of Seattle’s efforts to scale up our response to homelessness.”
According to the Alliance, the funding will create more than 3,000 affordable homes all across the state. Unfortunately, due to timing issues, $178 million in federal funding for housing is still at risk.
The Alliance asserts that to get built, “Many of those homes need federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits. The deadline to apply for those credits was missed by one day, and the many projects waiting on the Housing Trust Fund were unable to apply. The state Department of Commerce and the Washington State Housing Finance Commission are now working together to find a way to ensure those projects can still access the final funds they need.”
Featured image at top: Brettler Family Place was built with support of The Housing Trust Fund.