Real Estate News and Profiles

Is Portland Getting Closer To Affordable Housing?

affordable housing

There’s no denying that Portland Oregon has a severe lack of affordable housing that’s only gotten worse over the last 12 months as the city has grappled with it’s worse housing problem ever while dealing with more people moving to Portland Oregon by the day.

Thankfully some options are on the table to solve the affordable housing problem in Portland including a construction tax that’s expected to raise up to $12 million dollars per year which will be used to build more affordable housing in Portland.

Will It Be Enough?

Chances are that you’ve dealt with Portland’s lack of affordable housing personally in the last year by either having your rent raised or you know someone who has been unable to find a rental in Portland that will fit within their budget.

With the construction tax raising $12 million per year to fight the affordable housing problem in Portland the BIG question many locals have is will it be enough considering that Portland is still 2 years behind when it comes to housing construction and with more people calling Portland home by the day it’s unlikely that $12 million per year will solve the housing crunch in Portland.

The lack of affordable housing is the greatest crisis facing our city right now,” said Commissioner Dan Saltzman, who oversees the Portland Housing Bureau, recycling the same line he used during a meeting two weeks ago.

The construction-excise tax – 1 percent of the permitted value of commercial and residential projects – will ensure that “growth pays for growth,” Saltzman said.

Officials will begin collecting the tax Aug. 1 but will exempt housing built for people with limited incomes.

Separately, Saltzman on Thursday will ask the City Council to send a $258.4 million bond measure to voters to pay for 1,300 units of affordable housing.

Also during Wednesday’s City Council meeting, officials unanimously approved changes to the city’s lobbying regulations. The tweaks narrow restrictions on former employees who lobby the city. Auditor Mary Hull Caballero previously said existing rules are so broad they are “all but unenforceable.”

At the same time, Hull Caballero convinced the City Council to increase the maximum fine for violations from $500 to $3,000.

“Rules are not meaningful unless there’s meaningful enforcement,” Commissioner Steve Novick said.

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