HOME companion affordability item for 5/30 agenda

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Jose Velasquez
Posts: 32
Joined: Tue Jan 17, 2023 2:35 pm

HOME companion affordability item for 5/30 agenda

Post by Jose Velasquez »

Colleagues,

In response to the feedback we received from the community at April's joint hearing and at the various open houses and neighborhood meetings, it is evident that our commitment to supporting Austin's low- and moderate-income homeowners is more important than ever. As our city continues to grow, we need to make sure that no one gets left behind.

While the HOME initiative has introduced new entitlements, many residents have expressed concern. Building an additional unit or subdividing their property still feels out of reach. Creating more flexibility in how homeowners can leverage their properties is critical; long-time Austinites should be supported to age-in-place among their community, empowered to embrace multi-generational living, and able to generate rental income that can help offset the rising cost of living in Austin.

To address these challenges, my cosponsors and I are bringing an item that directs the City Manager to streamline processes, builds on the City's existing resources, and initiates new programs to ensure HOME entitlements are both feasible and accessible to all residents. You can find the draft resolution here: http://assets.austintexas.gov/austincou ... 180827.pdf

1. Access to Capital: By partnering with local financial institutions, finding ways to reduce upfront costs, and expanding the scope of the city’s existing programming, we improve access to capital for homeowners needing to make critical repairs or construct an additional home on their property.

2. Reducing Development Costs: We are creating an interdepartmental taskforce to streamline review processes, identify opportunities to reduce costs for homeowners.

3. Educational Resources and Outreach: Expanding educational programs and outreach initiatives is crucial. These initiatives enhance the Anti-Displacement Navigator Program and launch targeted public information campaigns about homeowner rights and protections, empowering Austinites with the knowledge to navigate potential challenges and avoid predatory practices.

These proposals are intended to strengthen our communities by ensuring that all residents, regardless of income, have a fair chance to live and thrive in Austin.

Thank you for considering these necessary measures. I look forward to working with you as we refine and work towards implementing these proposals to help make Austin a livable place for all.

Council Member José Velásquez and co-sponsors
Mayor Pro Tem Leslie Pool
Council Member Natasha Harper-Madison
Council Member Vanessa Fuentes
Council Member Chito Vela
Council Member, District 3
Ryan Alter
Posts: 59
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2023 3:15 pm

Re: HOME companion affordability item for 5/30 agenda

Post by Ryan Alter »

Thank you CM Velásquez and fellow colleagues for leading on this important resolution to provide assistance and expand access to low and middle income homeowners. I would like to join you in co-sponsoring item 115.
Council Member, District 5
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