Sorry for the late notice…but, if you can, share your thoughts about the new Housing Levy Tonight, Feb. 3, 2016, at the Southwest District Council meeting from 6:30pm – 8:00pm at the West Seattle Senior Center, 4217 SW Oregon St. If you can’t make it, there will be plenty of additional opportunities before the Mayor transmits the levy ordinance in March.
Since 1986, the Seattle Housing Levy has been a critical resource for the City, helping our most vulnerable community members to access affordable housing. Affordability is a major issue for many District 1 residents as well as residents throughout the City.
The levy helps the City of Seattle mitigate the housing affordability crisis. The average price for a 1 bedroom ranges between $1500 and $1700 per month making it impossible for a household earning less $53,000 per year to find an affordable dwelling unit.
In 2014, the 2009 Levy helped 1,455 INDIVIDUALS in 596 HOUSEHOLDS. Since 1986 residents have approved four affordable-housing levies. The total funding secured from these levies has funded 12,000 affordable apartments for seniors, low- and moderate-income workers and formerly homeless people, according to the Seattle Office of Housing. The 2009 housing levy will expire at the end of this year.
The Housing Affordability and Livability agenda (HALA) Committee report recommendation included the renewal of the current levy, but at a higher amount– $290 million over the next 7 years. The cost to median Seattle homeowners is $122/year (an increase of $5/month).
A significant portion of funding is reserved for homeless and extremely low-income households. Housing Levy capital funds are currently leveraged 3-to-1, bringing other public, philanthropic and private resources for affordable housing to our community. The levy directs spending for:
- $201 Million for Rental Production and Preservation Program of 2,150 affordable apartments
- $39 Million for operating and maintenance of 350 affordable apartments for low-income individuals and families in Seattle that is held as affordable for at least 50 years
- $11.5 Million for Homeless prevention to assist 4,500 families
- $12.5 Million for the Homeownership Program to assist 380 low-income homeowners
In District Site Visit
This Friday I will be visiting with several constituents by the Seola Pond area in the Arbor Heights neighborhood. This is historically a wetland marsh, but the bulk of the area was developed as single family homes between the 1940s and 1960s, and was annexed into the City of Seattle in 1956. Drainage in the area is primarily through ditches and culverts that rain into the Seola Pond, which drains into Seola Creek and ultimately reached the Puget Sound. Residents in the area have dealt with drainage and flooding issues since the 1970s and while Seattle has made some improvements over the past 50 years the community continues to struggle with these issues.
Just before the New Year we received a constituent email regarding some flooding in the area, road damage, and a broken culvert. I immediately reached out to Seattle Public Utilities who was able repair the broken culvert on January 14th. However, we found out through our conversations with several constituents from the area that this is an ongoing issue and that the area suffers from conic drainage issues.
Seattle Public Utilities and the Seattle Department of Transportation will be joining me on this visit to assess the drainage and infrastructure needs of the area.
Celebrate Neighbor Appreciation Day
Join me and my staff to celebrate Neighbor Appreciation Day! We will be planting native trees and shrubs and removing invasive plants, there will be a couple musicians to provide some entertainment as well as snacks and water. A pizza lunch will also be provided.
Please sign up here if you are going to attend.
When: Saturday Feb 13th, 2016
Where: Pigeon Point Park at Pathfinder Elementary School, 1901 SW Genesee St
Schedule for the Day:
- 10:00AM – 10:30AM – Sign In and Introductions
- 10:30AM – 12:30PM – Forest Restoration
- 12:30PM – 1:00PM – Lunch
- 1:00PM – 2:00PM – EcoArts Activity and Wrap Up