Bringing it Home Conference Agenda is now available: This year, we’re offering 18 live, interactive workshops designed to help you strengthen your services and advocacy for those at risk of or experiencing homelessness. Topics include increasing your organization’s capacity, fair housing protections, amplifying the voices of lived expertise, and evidence-based policy making on homelessness and evictions. Our speakers include both local and national experts who will share their successes and provide practical examples for how you can help end homelessness in NC.
Save the Date for the 2023 Housing Works Conference: It’s time to mark your calendars for the 2023 NC Affordable Housing Conference on October 23–24 at the Raleigh Convention Center! This year’s conference promises exciting new breakout sessions, renowned speakers and a chance to network with affordable housing professionals from all across the state. Stay tuned as we provide more information in the coming months! Registration will open July 24.
Housing advocates continue to push for a Federal budget that preserves funding for affordable housing. A number of Dear Colleague letters are circulating in D.C for housing allocations in the budget:
- Senator Menendez is circulating a letter in support of providing at least $341 million for the Treasury’s Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund.
- Representative DeSaulnier is circulating a letter in support of providing at least $50 million for the HUD’s Section 4 Capacity Building Program (Section 4) in FY24;
- Representative Beatty is leading a letter in support of $2.5 billion for the HOME program; and
- Representatives McLane Kuster, Pressley, and Evans are circulating a letter in support of allocating $150 million for HUD’s Family Self-Sufficiency Program.
- The Coalition is monitoring housing bills introduced this session through our new NCHC NCGA Bill Tracker.
- New bill(s) introduced since our call last week:
- HB 428 – Volunteer Firefighters Property Tax Exclusion – Expands homestead exclusion for disabled veterans to include volunteer firefighters.
- HB 474 – Facilitate Small Housing (Price, Brody, & Dahle). Requires local gov’ts to permit construction of small housing (800 sq ft. or less) on lots zoned residential or mixed-use. Exceptions for local historic districts and private covenants between landowners.
- As mentioned on last week’s call, SB 317, Addressing the Workforce Housing Crisis, would allow single-family developments to bypass local zoning regulations if:
- The development is at least 10 acres; and
- The development reserves 20% of the units as “workforce housing.”
The bill’s bipartisan support is somewhat surprising. The Coalition is meeting with Democratic legislators this week to better understand their support for the bill [comment on what we’ve learned so far from Blue’s office].
- Short duration of affordability requirement. The owner/occupant of the affordable units only has to live in the home for 1 year. Many local governments lack capacity to track AMI and occupancy and conveyance.
- No enforcement mechanism or penalty for non-compliance. There is not much incentive for local governments to track affordability since there is no enforcement mechanism or penalty for non-compliance.
- Ambiguity regarding mixed-use or solely residential development. It’s unclear if the rest of the development would be required to be residential.
- What is SCAD? Simplifying Codes for more Affordable Development (SCAD) is a private text amendment in Durham that was initiated by Raleigh developer Jim Anthony and Durham Habitat. Durham Habitat recently asked for their name to be removed from the SCAD application after they received criticism for supporting the text amendment.
- How would SCAD impact Durham? Similar to SB 317, SCAD would loosen development regulations, purportedly to ease the pathway for developers to build more affordable housing. 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.
- How do SCAD and the Workforce Housing Bill relate? Both documents need to be strengthened in a nuanced way that both increases housing supply through the elimination of red tape and preserves the checks and balances in place to prevent gentrification and displacement.
- In Raleigh, homeowners in the wealthy Hayes Barton neighborhood filed a lawsuit against the City over their Missing Middle housing policies. The City approved the policies in 2021 and 2022 to promote housing density through the creation of townhomes, ADUs, and duplexes. Recently, Hayes Barton residents vocally opposed the demolition of a historic house where developers plan to construct 17 market-rate townhomes. Housing advocates are concerned the lawsuit could signal the beginning of efforts to repeal Missing Middle policies.
- Nonprofit organization Leading into New Communities (LINC) recently acquired 4 additional units of permanent supportive housing in Wilmington. The City of Wilmington supplied a $460K loan financed through the city’s Rental Incentive Loan Program and CDBG funds. LINC plans to use these units to help address the significant need for rental housing for recently incarcerated individuals.
Reports & Resources
- Forces Driving Change in Rural North Carolina – Report | NC Rural Center
- Rental Markets One Year After Our America’s Rental Housing – Report | Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University
- How Much Could Downpayment Assistance Help Close Homeownership Rate Gaps for Black and Hispanic Households? | Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University
- Patching the Patchwork: Moving the Civil Right to Counsel Forward With Key Data | Journal of Civil Rights and Economic Development
- Land-use reforms and housing costs: Does allowing for increased density lead to greater affordability? | Urban Studies
- Zoning Restrictiveness Index | Eviction Lab
- [virtual] Free Workshop for Landlords & Property Managers | City of Concord & NC Human Relations Commission, 3/30, 12-2 p.m.
- This session will broadly cover fair housing topics, including a presentation by Gene Troy, the Interim Director and a Senior Fair Housing Investigator of the N.C. Human Relations Commission
- [virtual] How to See the Housing Sector: The Roots of the US Housing Data Ecosystem | Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University, 3/31 @ 1:15 p.m.
In the News
- Watauga Housing Forum leads to a year of momentum, change | wataugademocrat.com
- Affordable housing an issue not just for low income families; teachers, public safety officers also struggling | WECT
- How do people released from prison find housing? | The New York Times
- Private opulence, public squalor: How the U.S. helps the rich and hurts the poor | NPR
- We were told there’d be a wave of home sales once baby boomers turned 65. That isn’t happening | The Boston Globe
- ‘We’ve become a renting nation’: Landlords benefit from high house prices, but millions of renters find themselves trapped | Marketwatch
- “History doesn’t repeat itself, but it often rhymes” : The coming threat of dramatic budget cuts and the impact on affordable housing | Opportunity Starts at Home