o Public Housing Authorities are the primary provider for 30% and below AMI households
o 3700 vouchers are in circulation (85% of voucher holders are 30% AMI)
o 1449 public housing units (75% of people living in public housing are 30% AMI)
o 9100 households are on the voucher wait list
o 6300 households are on the public housing wait list
o Only about 300 vouchers turn over annually, thus the wait time for both is two to five plus years
o Vouchers can only be used for units renting at or below Fair Market Rent
LIHTC (Low Income Housing Tax Credit)
o Can take two or three years to develop
o Tightly regulated program
o Average total subsidy to create one 60% AMI unit is $159k; average City subsidy is $37k per unit
o According to staff, land subsidies alone may not be enough incentive to include affordable housing in market-rate development. Staff cited example of a $6M plot of land getting a density bonus from 200 units to 400 units. This would reduce the per unit land cost from $30k to $15k, leaving a gap of $144k per unit. But staff did not point out that developer profit has increased substantially by doubling the entitlement and could perhaps help subsidize that gap for some number of “affordable” units.
o Relatively little research has been done on consequences of inclusionary zoning
o Councilor Melton asks about possibility of allowing Single Room Only occupancy
o Councilor Harrison asks how City can sustainably scale up AH subsidies and references that a rent control bill that has been introduced in the NC General Assembly. Asked for more information about effectiveness of rent control.
o Councilor Harrison asks about increasing participation by development community in LIHTC funding opportunities. Staff says there is interest in 4% LIHTC funding, but gap financing is the constraint. 9% LIHTC funding is more competitive.
o Councilor Patton asks what happens after thirty-year time span is up. Staff says affordability often continues beyond the thirty-year period, but sometimes converts to market rate.
o Councilor Jones asks what additional tools could be used to promote affordability since the ones we have don’t seem to be working. Asks about turning empty office or commercial space into affordable housing (adaptive re-use). Staff says that’s really up to developers and that zoning is typically not a barrier. Jones asks what else City can do to incentivize residential space in office or commercial space.
o Councilor Melton advocates retiring Office Park (OP) zoning and encourages staff to bring new ideas.