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State awards $65 million for affordable housing projects
The Washington State Department of Commerce awarded more than $65 million from the Housing Trust Fund for 49 affordable housing projects in 23 counties across the state. The projects will provide a total of 2,349 units of affordable housing for low-income households and people with special needs, and will generate an estimated 2,866 jobs.
“This housing will help improve the lives of thousands of struggling families and individuals across our state,” said Gov. Chris Gregoire. “At the same time, these construction jobs will support our economy and put people back to work.”
A detailed list of projects and locations is available on the Commerce website. The projects serve a variety of vulnerable populations, including seniors, homeless families and individuals, and people with physical or developmental disabilities. They serve households with incomes at or below 80 percent of area median income, but most will serve even lower incomes, with more than two-thirds of units targeted to households at 50 percent of median or lower. All units must remain affordable to the target population for 40 years.
Commerce estimates the development of these 49 projects will generate approximately 2,866 jobs, including 1,800 in the construction industry. Funds for these awards were made available through a supplemental capital appropriation that was part of the 2012 Jobs Now Act, passed by the Legislature.
The state’s investment will leverage $346 million from other sources, or about $5.30 for every dollar from the Housing Trust Fund, including funds from Low Income Housing Tax Credits, private investors, and other public sources.
“These partnerships make it possible to provide safe, affordable housing options to our state’s most vulnerable citizens,” said Dan McConnon, Commerce deputy director for community services and housing. “Maximizing the state’s investment in affordable housing with other sources of funding is a key priority and helps grow housing options in our state.”
The Housing Trust Fund supports community efforts to ensure the availability of safe, decent and affordable housing by providing loans and grants for construction, acquisition and rehabilitation of low-income multi-family and single-family housing. Since 1989, the Housing Trust Fund has increased or improved the stock of affordable housing in Washington by more than 40,000 units and has invested approximately $900 million toward new and improved housing, leveraging more than $3 billion in private and public sector support.