Maximize Lodging Tax Dollars for Affordable Housing
On 7/30 Housing Advocates told King County Council to prioritize affordable housing over Safeco Field Maintenance.
Bright and early Monday morning, housing advocates woke up ready to raise their voices in support of safe, healthy, and affordable homes for everyone in King County. On Thursday July 26th, HDC and SKCCH sent out an advocacy alert to Team Housing in order to mobilize the affordable housing movement to show up at the King County Council meeting.
And show up they did. Dozens of advocates filled the chamber. And why would people want to spend three hours of their day at a county council meeting?
Because King County needs 157,000 affordable homes right now. County Executive, Dow Constantine announced the allocation of the funds generated from the Lodging tax (also known as the Hotel/Motel tax). The proposal allocated the bare minimum to affordable housing and around $180 million for Safeco field maintenance. King County has a severe housing shortage and 1/3 of King County households are cost burdened. Team Housing showed up to tell the Council that they need to use these public funds for homes and not home runs. 30 people testified to tell the Council to allocate these public funds for more affordable homes to combat the state of emergency the Council declared. Over 600 messages have been sent to the Council from HDC advocates. We are being clear about what we want. We want safe, healthy, and affordable homes in communities of opportunity for everyone.
Conversation in the Media:
- Seattle Weekly‘s take on breaking down current council member leanings and predicted stances
- KUOW‘s analysis of the hearing (They quoted our amazing, passionate intern Rebecca!)
- Crosscut tells us “everything comes back to housing in King County” yes as it should!
- Council Member Kohl-Welles is changing her tune. From sponsoring the current proposal to supporting more funding for housing! Exciting news update!
- KOMO News Coverage “If we have a state of emergency, we should be making decisions that prioritize that emergency, that crisis moment over some kind of nice to have things,“-Sara Wamsley, our amazing Policy Manager
What Comes Next:
- Mark your calendars for August 29th for the next opportunity for public testimony
- Continue to send the council members messages
- Keep up with the news to find out what is being said and where the winds are blowing
Page will continued to be updated as things continue to happen.