Affordable Housing Deep Dive
With over eleven hundred individuals and families on the affordable housing wait list, we must think and act boldly if we are to attain the community goal of housing 65% of our workforce locally. Global market pressures are working against us, as investors drive up real estate prices and entice locals to sell. We cannot simply “build” our way out of this situation using only the marketplace tools of supply and demand. If elected, I pledge to negotiate with private partners, exchanging valuable density bonuses for assurances of permanent affordable, workforce housing.
Recent studies have revealed that over EIGHT THOUSAND commuters drive back and forth up the canyon or over the pass EVERY DAY. Fewer and fewer teachers, nurses, emergency service providers, and other working folks can afford to plant their roots in our valley. Housing our workforce close to their jobs represents a massive opportunity to fulfill the goals set out in our Comprehensive Plan. This good for our environment and good for our community. For more about my views on transit, please dive deeper HERE.
Affordable housing is affordable only because it is subsidized. While some of our housing funding comes from community philanthropy, the vast majority of the housing costs are absorbed by our local governments. I support the RETT (Real Estate Transfer Tax) on a graduated scale for properties sold in Teton County. For a deeper dive into my view on possible funding sources that could support housing projects, please dive deeper HERE.
With free market housing costs beyond the reach of all but a few, we stand at a pivotal crossroads for our community. The solutions to our community’s housing problems are within our grasp if we elect leaders who are capable, creative, and dedicated. As a business owner (Teton Toys) and board member (currently START and formerly ISWR- Integrated Solid Waste and Recycling) I am prepared to negotiate the tricky pitfalls to get affordable workforce housing in the ground.