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Prop 15: Affordable Housing

Austin voters will be asked to decide on 18 propositions this fall, including seven bond spending propositions worth $385 million. KUT News is reporting on all seven of the bond propositions; today we take a look at Prop 15, which would dedicate $78 million in city dollars to affordable housing.

“There is a need for affordable housing everywhere, and there is a strong desire to have the ability for residents to have a housing choice in all parts of Austin,” says Rebecca Giello with the city’s Neighborhood Housing and Community Development Office.

Prop 15 would provide funding to build, renovate and repair homes for low-income Austinites. It also earmarks money for home improvements for the disabled and elderly.

Supporters say that all types of people in Austin need affordable housing.

“We need the people that need affordable housing,” said Ann Howard, executive director of the Ending Community Homelessness Coalition. “They might be working in our school cafeterias, or in our hospitals, or in our home health facilities, at the Capitol building. People who are on very meager incomes, but do work. Or might have suffered a disability and therefore have some assistance, but not much.”

Voters previously approved a $55 million bond for the city’s affordable housing program in 2006. And homeless advocacy organizations, like Green Doors, say that in a growing city, even 2012’s $78 million bond isn’t enough to fill the city’s affordable housing need.

Looking to learn more about Prop 15? You can read more on city's website.

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