CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Voters in Charlotte recently approved a $50 million bond for affordable housing. It addresses the need for new construction and preserves existing housing through rehabilitation projects.
What You Need To Know
- Voters approved a $50 million dollar bond for affordable housing
- The bond will benefit the Housing Trust Fund
- The funding will be used through 2024
The money will go toward the Housing Trust Fund, which has been in existence for 20 years. During that time, the city said it has created or repaired more than 10,000 affordable housing units.
“Those are thousands and thousands of families over the last 20 years that have had the ability to live in housing they can truly afford and hopefully in some way that has helped them in their life in a very meaningful way,” Director of Housing and Neighborhood Services for the City of Charlotte Shawn Heath said.
Roof Above, a nonprofit organization providing homeless services, has benefited from the bond. According to the CEO, Liz Clasen-Kelly, the group received more than $2 million for four projects.
The funds helped get their three emergency shelters up and running. In addition, it supported Moore Place, an affordable housing complex for people who have been homeless for more than a year and are medically fragile.
“It can be a significant boost and can sometimes fill the gap of that project,” Clasen-Kelly said.
In Charlotte, the city estimates 32,000 affordable housing units are needed.
Roof Above and Habitat for Humanity of the Charlotte Region have seen the need first hand.
“We know that one third of residents are cost burden for housing. They’re spending more than 30% of their gross income in housing expenses,” Habitat for Humanity of the Charlotte Region Senior Vice President of Advancement Shannon Green said.
The city invested $250,000 of the Housing Trust Fund in Habitat’s future project to build 17 affordable town homes in eastern Mecklenburg County.
“We don’t have to worry about coming from other sources and we can start to move on planning additional projects so it helps keep the production schedule moving,” Green said.
Green and Clasen-Kelly are happy voters approved another housing bond.
“We are grateful the community continues to vote to support bonds every other year. We know housing is a top concern,” Clasen-Kelly said.
According to Heath, the Charlotte City Council requested a tuneup of the Housing Trust Fund.
“We have evolved to some degree how we use the fund, but this is an appropriate time to reflect on what is the highest and best use for the housing trust fund resources that are at our disposal,” Heath said.
The city council will have the final say on the use for the housing trust fund.
Organizations have to apply for funding once the city requests proposals. The $50 million voters approved will be used from now through 2024.