The rules of the game—and the attitudes of the players—have an enormous effect on community development work at all levels. Here we look at some of the conversations about how to shift that policy for the better.
The wealth gap is probably best illustrated in the way our country has, and has not, provided access to the single most important determinant of wealth for the majority of people in the United States—home and landownership.
Throughout 2018's six day Sol-2-Sol climate justice convening, indigenous people from the occupied U.S. territories and lands from around the world led many of the actions and activities, especially those directly impacted.
Over a dozen stories of how Americans from all different backgrounds have managed to leverage a few thousand dollars to lead lives that have helped thousands of other people, and strategies to reinvigorate a movement to influence asset building policy nationally.
Voters have set up an unprecedented fight between progressive housing groups and real estate interests. It will be a brutal fight. For proof of this, housing advocates in New York need only to look at California.
Senator Elizabeth Warren and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency have offered contrasting visions for the future of CRA. How do they differ, and what would the implications for historically disinvested communities be?
Sen. Warren's proposed bill represents the kind of holistic housing strategy we need from the federal government in facilitating affordable housing for all Americans in all cities and towns who have been left out, locked out, or exploited over decades by the national housing market.
How different would cities look and how different would people’s lives be if those with the power to set policy and invest resources prioritized the most vulnerable residents and the neighborhoods they live in?
Every once in a while someone says: "What would it look like if we came together and were united on a federal policy for housing?" It seems like the answer to "who would actually do it?" might currently be Senator Elizabeth Warren.
Local elected officials are having to re-examine the risks and rewards of making housing and housing affordability a political priority. Could one mayor's bold steps on housing policy be a national bellwether?
We should have known better. The Kerner Commission taught us that race matters most, not place. But it also embedded in our psyches the equation of Black = central city and the similarly absolute equation of white = suburbs.
At the Aug. 1, 1968 signing ceremony, President Johnson proclaimed “Today, we are going to put on the books of American law what I genuinely believe is the most farsighted, the most comprehensive, the most massive housing program in all American history.” He was right.
A deeper dive into the cause of high housing prices reveals that it is not the price of lumber, bricks, or labor that accounts for high or low housing prices—the controlling factor most often is the price of land.
Whether it’s the need to recapture some momentum in the 2018 election season, or the growing effect of the housing crisis on a wider range of people, the Democratic Party has proposed investing $70 billion in public housing.
In many ways, the recognition of the current “crisis” stems from middle- and upper-income Californians finally being impacted, and using their power to push for solutions that would address their situation. But their solutions ignore another population.
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What is the underlying dynamic that leads so many council members in low-income communities of color to approve neighborhood rezonings, despite community opposition and the likelihood of increased displacement pressure on existing residents?
In Pennsylvania, domestic violence survivors are often not afforded the protections they are entitled to because many people are often unaware of the Responsible Utility Customer Protection Act and its provisions. A three-year pilot program aimed to change that.
A government report concludes that residents of low- and moderate-income Census tracts have as much access to bank branches as residents in middle- and upper-income tracts in rural areas and large metropolitan areas. Yet access to bank services for low- and moderate-income consumers is still being lost. Why is that?
A university study on rent control makes three crucial mistakes in its assessment of the policy's effect on San Francisco's housing market. Housing advocacy organization Tenants Together sets the record straight on rent control's role, and who is actually to blame for the city's unaffordability.
Banks enjoy consumer and taxpayer-funded privileges, such as deposit insurance, and not too long ago, subsidized trillion-dollar bailouts. It’s not too much to insist that they invest a fair share of those dollars back into all of our communities.
Private developers and public agencies are finally investing in neighborhoods near transit and jobs—where many low-income communities of color have lived for generations—and as a result, are being pushed out just as resources in their neighborhoods are increasing.
“The string of victories in 2017 are a direct product of renters building power on the ground. Renters, faced with a historic housing crisis, are getting organized to change immediate conditions on the ground and build a movement to transform the way land and housing are treated in the country.”
In 2010, the scattered enforcement of consumer protection and fair lending laws across several agencies would end. The CFPB would have broad oversight over banks and non-banks, and though not perfect, this model has produced some impressive results.
For the past two years I’ve worked as a housing lottery project manager for a small affordable housing developer and have found that, in spite of De Blasio’s bold initiative, the program often fails to efficiently and adequately serve the very people for which it has been designed.
After years-long notice and comment periods, a final rule on using small area Fair Market Rents to determine housing choice voucher payment levels was supposed to take effect. However, the Trump administration has recently announced a two-year suspension of the rule.
Tax brackets, tax breaks, and just how much more rich the rich will become are all important details, no doubt, but among those details runs a single, shining, unifying message: Some people are worth investing in, and some are not.
In Minnesota, ten mobile home communities have closed in the past twenty-five years, and no new ones have opened. This uncertainty affects nearly 3 million Americans who are residents in the nation’s 50,000 manufactured housing communities. While most of these homeowners own their own homes, they rent the land, leaving them vulnerable to dramatic rent increases, arbitrary rules, and even eviction.
We need to talk about inclusionary housing in a different way that circumvents common misperceptions and creates a new narrative for policymakers in moderate markets and more conservative political climates. Here are 10 messages to help frame your conversations.
If we built enough housing, we would still need subsidized housing for many people, but market prices would be low enough that most people could afford them. But we’ve chosen not to. And the reason we give for that choice, more than any other, is that we are trying to preserve or improve the character of our communities.
Absent a fundamentally new approach to redevelopment planning that places housing affordability at the center of the process, large-scale sustainable development projects are likely to become engines of what has been termed “environmental gentrification.”
Artists have left their mark on Station North and paved the way for an arts district, but the organically-developed communal live/work spaces that play such a vital role in helping make Baltimore an arts mecca are an endangered species.
When the 2017 Prosperity Now Scorecard was published last month, it was no surprise that Louisiana ranked second-to-last among all 50 states and the District of Columbia, as it typically falls somewhere near the bottom. In many ways, the Scorecard confirmed what we already knew: that most Louisiana families, especially low-income families and families of color, are not faring well financially. What was surprising, however, was how far Louisiana had fallen.
There have been a number of stories in the papers over the last two months that, from my perspective, are connected. Unfortunately, their common denominator is the demise of affordable housing caused by the malignant neglect of government at all levels.
Improving the well-being of homeless children and their families led Enterprise Community Partners, Citizens’ Committee for Children of New York, and New Destiny Housing to convene a Family Homelessness Task Force comprised of over 40 organizations.
The power and process of boards that take control of a city or territory's finances is becoming more generalized, although they affect local democracy, impose austerity measures without controls, and lack mechanisms to evaluate their efficiency.
The Bay Area can benefit from a clearer framework for understanding what the housing needs of our region actually are and evaluating how housing production is meeting those needs. A Jobs-Housing Fit is that framework.
This past Wednesday, President Donald Trump released a one-page outline of a tax plan that he says provides tax relief for the middle class, but in reality, the plan is basically a massive tax cut for the rich. Like the American Health Care Act, which actually was also a massive tax cut for the wealthy disguised as health care reform, this plan is also a massive tax cut for people who need it the least. This time, it is merely disguised as “tax relief” and “simplification.”