Update: Every State Will Likely Lose Housing Vouchers If Congress Doesn’t Boost Funding for 2017

From the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities

We’ve updated our December report urging policymakers to provide a large funding boost to renew housing vouchers in 2017. It now includes the potential impact of funding shortfalls in every state. Under a continuing resolution that freezes voucher funding for all of 2017 at last year’s level, for example, vouchers for more than 100,000 families would be unfunded, a loss of assistance that would be greater than what the 2013 sequestration cuts caused. Larger states like Florida, California, New Jersey, and North Carolina would lose the most vouchers, but smaller states like Maine and West Virginia would also lose rental assistance for hundreds of low-income seniors, people with disabilities, and families with children. For more information, see the updated report here.

Register for CBPP Webinar, “Treacherous Road Ahead: Outlook for Federal Housing Funding and Policy”

The safety net – including federal housing assistance – is facing the gravest threats in our lifetimes, and the road ahead will be unpredictable as well as difficult. In a webinar at 2 pm (ET) on Thursday, February 16, CBPP staff Barbara Sard and Doug Rice will guide participants through the challenging terrain of federal housing funding and policy in 2017, with an eye towards identifying key threats, opportunities, and decision points.

To register for the free webinar, go to: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/809259630108777729.

Budget Relief Should Go Equally to Defense and Non-Defense

The House may soon consider a bill to fund the Defense Department for the rest of fiscal year 2017, and the bill may give defense some relief from the sequestration budget cuts without doing the same for non-defense programs. As our colleague, David Reich, explains, to do so would be to break an essential principle of parity that Congress has adhered to since the passage of the Budget Control Act of 2011. This principle has played a key role in mitigating budget cuts to housing assistance and community development programs.

To Address and Study Recent Increases in Gentrification, the Causes of Neighborhood Change Must Be Understood

Reposted from How Housing Matters.

Understanding the causes of recent gentrification can help guide analyses of and responses to neighborhood change, according to a report by Jackelyn Hwang and Jeffrey Lin in Cityscape. The authors define gentrification “as the process in which neighborhoods with low SES [socioeconomic status] experience increased investment and an influx of new residents of higher SES.” The authors document changes in the prevalence of gentrification in downtowns and outlying neighborhoods of small and large metropolitan areas using an SES index that compares census tracts in metropolitan areas by the percentage of residents over age 25 with at least a college degree and average household income. Hwang and Lin identify causal factors of this phenomenon by reviewing the available literature.

Their review also reveals additional opportunities for research to expand the scope of factors that contribute to gentrification. But some causal factors of gentrification may be difficult to identify, such as small changes in development activity leading to a change in neighborhood composition and amenities, which could create a “self-sustaining cycle for gentrification in gentrifying neighborhoods.”

Key findings

  • Between 1970 and 2010, the number of big cities that contain at least one downtown neighborhood experiencing gentrification increased from 25 percent to more than 50 percent. In small metropolitan areas, this figure increased from almost 0 percent to 15 percent. The share of downtown tracts that were gentrifying rose sharply between 2000 and 2010.
  • Recent literature indicates that changes in access to jobs and amenities are causal factors for gentrification. While the literature suggests mixed evidence for the effect that job access has on gentrification, there is more of a consensus that changes in amenities play an important role in understanding gentrification.
  • Evidence fails to demonstrate the causal effects of public policies; new technologies; race, ethnicity, and diversity; family structure and demography; housing finance; and housing supply on gentrification.

Homeless advocacy groups to study racial disparity in central Ohio housing needs

By Rita Price
The Columbus Dispatch  •  Monday December 5, 2016 2:30 PM
Nearly three-quarters of families served in Franklin County homeless shelters are black, a share deeply disproportionate to the overall population, which is just 22 percent black.
Local and national advocates for the homeless gathered last week at the King Arts Complex to discuss the disparity and to start what they see as a long overdue conversation about race and housing stability in central Ohio.

Read the full story.

Next Dialogue to Cover Homelessness Among Mothers

The next meeting of the Columbus Housing Dialogue will discuss recent research into homelessness among young mothers. Professor Natasha Slesnick conducts research on intervention development with homeless youth and families. She has consulted with multiple organizations on the best strategies for intervening in youth homelessness. She has been continuously funded by the NIH since 1998 and has written more than 70 peer-reviewed publications, book chapters and one book. After opening a drop-in center for homeless youth in Albuquerque, New Mexico, she moved to Columbus, Ohio and opened her second drop-in center.

Title: “Housing young homeless mothers: Some findings”
Presenter: Natasha Sleznick, Professor at The Ohio State University
Date: Tuesday, Nov. 29
Time: 8:30am
Location: MORPC, Scioto Conference Room
Address: 111 Liberty Street, Columbus, OH 43215

Areas of Expertise

  • Homeless youth, homeless families, substance using mothers
  • Substance use treatment (family therapy, MET, CRA)
  • Intervention/service development and evaluation (outreach and advocacy)
  • Suicide prevention

What Helps Families Who Are Experiencing Homelessness?

BETHESDA, MD — How do we best help families experiencing homelessness, and how do we keep them from becoming homeless again? Three-year findings from a major study released by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and Abt Associates show that long-term housing subsidies, particularly housing vouchers, are the best strategy.

Providing priority access to long-term housing subsidies to homeless families helps keep families from becoming homeless again and has a variety of positive benefits – from keeping families out of shelters and off the street, to preventing food insecurity and intimate partner violence and reducing school moves for children in homeless families.

From September 2010 through January 2012, 2,282 families with 5,397 children enrolled in the Family Options Study across 12 communities after spending at least seven days in emergency shelter. Researchers from Abt Associates and Vanderbilt University followed the families for 37 months, gathering evidence about which types of housing and services interventions worked best for homeless families. Participating communities were Alameda County, Calif.; Atlanta; Baltimore; Boston; Bridgeport and New Haven , Conn.; Denver; Honolulu; Kansas City, Mo.; Louisville, Ky.; Minneapolis; Phoenix and Salt Lake City.


Read the full story.

Shipping containers as low-income housing?

Check out the Cargominiums coming to Columbus

Columbus Business First, Evan Weese


A nonprofit, faith-based housing developer has a quirky solution for tackling homelessness: Shipping containers.

Nothing Into Something Real Estate Inc. is building a 25-unit housing complex out of recycled steel shipping containers in Columbus, just north of Interstate 670 from the city’s near east side.

Check out the full article here!