Commissioner Mary Tingerthal opened the meeting by stating that many of the projects recently approved for funding through the Consolidated RFP are moving forward with their project launch (intake) meetings. Not going as well, she continued, is the reception to a set of proposed changes to 2017 and 2018 QAP, suggested by the Agency in October. QAPs establish the criteria for awarding federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits. Tingerthal acknowledged opposition to the proposed changes, as some saw the changes as the Agency stopping projects mid-track. Tingerthal said that Agency staff now recommends that it forgo the changes to the 2017 QAP, and take more time in listening to concerns regarding the proposed changes for the 2018 QAP.
On November 9th, nearly 100 housing developers and advocates convened at MHP’s latest Investors Council breakfast to discuss the challenges facing housing choice voucher (HCV) holders and to consider how housing industry leaders might work together to address those challenges.
MHP welcomed four panelists, Jessica Deegan of the Minnesota Housing Finance Agency, Lael Robertson of Minnesota Legal Aid’s Housing Discrimination Law Project, Terri Smith of Metropolitan Council HRA, and Mary Rippe of Minnesota Multi Housing Association. The panelists provided insight into a range of perspectives — from the voucher holders themselves, to their landlords, to the entities that administer vouchers. Deidre Schmidt of CommonBond Communities (pictured right) moderated the conversation.
More specifically, the FHIC is seeking input to create an addendum to the region's Analysis to Impediments to Fair Housing, a document required for area cities to get funding from the U.S. Department for Housing and Urban Development. In particular, this addendum specifically focuses on race and national origin — and the impact of segregation, housing discrimination, displacement, gentrification, and barriers to housing choice on communities of color.
Like so many communities, Mora has a long waiting list to secure one of the city’s affordable rental units. But, in the East Central Minnesota town, a particularly vulnerable population makes up the majority of the list. Of the 208 families, 161 are older adults over 55.
“The waiting lists are so heavy with seniors that many of them aren’t living long enough to get to the top of the list,” says Rose Dunn.