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Housing Call: March 21, 2023

Guest Speaker: Claire Williamson, Energy Policy Advocate, NC Justice Center

Duke Energy Progress (DEP) virtual hearing is scheduled for Thursday, April 20, 2023 6:00 p.m.

  1. To register, please complete the electronic Remote Public Witness Registration form located on the Commission’s website at If assistance is needed, please contact 919-733-0837.
  2. Only the first 20 individuals registered by 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, April 13, 2023, will be allowed to testify at the April 20, 2023, remote public witness hearing. This hearing will be canceled if no one registers to testify by 5:00 p.m. on April 13, 2023.

Or provide written comments

  1. DEP customers can either mail written statements to the North Carolina Utilities Commission, 4325 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, North Carolina 27699-4300 (they should reference Docket No. E-2, Sub 1300 in those statements), or email the Commission a statement about the rate case via the Commission’s website at (this portal will prompt them to include that docket number). Those statements will be accessible via Docket No. E-2, Sub 1300CS,, about two to three business days after they are received.

Federal Updates

  • Now that the President’s FY24 Budget Request has been released, Senate Appropriations subcommittees are beginning to schedule hearings on the fiscal 2024 budget request. These hearings are expected to occur over the next few months.
  • The Senate Finance Committee held a hearing on affordable housing last week where senators and witnesses discussed the effectiveness of the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program and opportunities for its expansion and reform. In his remarks, Chairman Ron Wyden from Oregon, cited the impact of rising rents on a handful of cities, including Charlotte, NC. He noted that in the last five years, Charlotte experienced an average $558 increase in rents, or 46 percent.

State Updates

  • Governor Roy Cooper released his proposed budget for fiscal years 2023-2025. The total recommended investment in housing is $160 million, which is the highest amount recommended of any budget proposal in more than a decade. For details, check out the Coalition’s blog post.
  • Several housing-related bills were filed last week, including:
    • SB 317, Addressing the Workforce Housing Crisis, which requires local governments to approve developments of at least 10 acres where at least 20% of the units are workforce housing. The project is approved if the local government doesn’t approve or deny the application within 60 days.

The Coalition is monitoring these and the other housing bills introduced this session through our new NCHC NCGA Bill Tracker.

  • Governor Cooper announced Friday that he will not sign Senate bill 53, which strips people who maintain their primary residence in a hotel/motel/RV park from tenant protections under NC’s landlord/tenant laws for the first 90 days of their lease. The bill passed the legislature with bipartisan support and, without a veto, the bill will become law even without the governor’s signature.
  • The North Carolina Senate voted Wednesday to expand Medicaid. The bill passed quickly with no debate and no amendments.The bill now returns to the North Carolina House for an up-or-down “concurrence” vote. The expansion bill is tied to funding in the state budget, which means the bill won’t take effect unless the budget becomes law.

Local Updates

  • Habitat for Humanity of Durham withdrew its support from a proposal to change Durham’s zoning ordinance. The proposal, called “Simplifying Codes for more Affordable Development” or “SCAD”, was originally initiated by Durham Habitat and Raleigh developer Jim Anthony. The proposal has drawn criticism, with local leaders and community members concerned that it would relax regulatory compliances in a way that worsens gentrification and displacement.
  • In Onslow County, Springfield Park Apartments was awarded funding from the state for 80 affordable apartment homes to serve working families and Hurricane Florence survivors. The $239,400 loan is an appropriation from the Workforce Housing Loan Program and will enable the completion of the project by directly funding construction and lowering rents.
  • WeBuild Concord, an affordable housing nonprofit launched by the city of Concord, bought a historic church with plans to develop it into 15 affordable housing and workspace units. The different apartment units will range from a studio to three bedrooms.
  • Also in Concord, city leaders are considering a proposed ordinance that would allow tiny homes to be built within city limits. City officials said they have received an increasing number of inquiries from developers about smaller homes on smaller lots in areas that currently have single-family homes.
  • Mountain Housing Opportunities (MHO) received a $1 million grant from Dogwood Health Trust to help build sixty-eight affordable homes in the Leicester community of Buncombe County. The new subdivision, called Pentland Hills, will feature two- to three-bedroom single-family homes and duplexes.
  • Buncombe County is considering the use of three county-owned sites for future affordable housing, which all totaled, could bring at least 430 new units to the county. The county is partnering with the Development Finance Initiative at the UNC School of Government, which presented potential projects that the county could undertake to create affordable housing.

Reports & Resources


  • [in-person] Housing Policy Forum 2023 | NLIHC, 3/21-3/23 in Washington, D.C. (virtual option available!)
  • [virtual] Improving America’s Housing 2023 | Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University, 3/23, 12:30 p.m.
  • [in-person] Housing Affordability in the Cape Fear | Cape Fear Housing Coalition, 3/23, 8 a.m., UNCW Warwick Center
    • Our executive director, Samuel Gunter, will kick off the program at 8:30 speaking about housing-related funding and legislation at state and federal levels. Shane Phillips, author of The Affordable City will deliver the keynote address.

In the News

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Housing Call: March 14, 2023

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