• For more information on Green Party membership or to contact Green Party leadership, email info@greensofarlington.org Join the Arlington Greens in person on Wednesday, Oct 5, 2022, at 7 PM in the community room of the Ballston Firehouse located at Wilson Blvd and George Mason Drive.

June 13, 2013

Arlington Housing Authority Referendum Meets Ballot Acess Requirement for November Election

Affordable Housing — @ 9:22 am

Arlington Housing Authority Referendum Meets Ballot Acess Requirement for November Election,

June 13, 2013

Steve Davis, chairman of the Arlington Green Party (AGP), announced today that the Arlington Voter Registrar has determined that backers of the low income housing authority referendum in Arlington have submitted the required 2,845 signatures needed to place a referendum on the ballot. The referendum will ask Arlington voters to authorize the operation of a low income housing authority in Arlington for the first time. Over twenty five cities and counties in Virginia have such an authority, but Arlington does not.

Davis, and AGP County Board candidate Audrey Clement, and other members of the Green Party led the nearly six-month campaign to get the referendum on the November ballot. He said, “Arlington’s current housing assistance program has failed to stop the loss of affordable housing, and a housing authority would raise funds more easily, lower administrative costs, and provide more affordable rental units.”

Davis also says that a housing authority in Arlington would:
· Make the county eligible for federal HUD funds for which it does not now qualify;
· Increase access to bond markets and federal housing tax credits;
· Reduce the cost of Arlington’s current housing program by consolidating housing functions under one umbrella agency;
· Provide one-stop shopping for Arlington tenants with a centralized housing list
· Supply public rental housing for county employees like entry level firefighters, police, teachers, and nurses to live within the county.

Davis indicated that the AGP discovered that over 14,000 families in Arlington needed affordable rental housing in 2010, according to the VA Tech Center for Housing Research, and that Arlington County had the most expensive rental housing in the Metro DC area except for the City of Alexandria. About 15,000 people in Arlington lived below the official federal poverty level, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Many lower income residents were forced out of Arlington as housing costs rose: The number of Latinos living in Arlington fell by 11 percent between 2000 and 2010, mostly because of demolitions and higher rents. The 20,000 private, market-rate apartments in Arlington in 2000 that were affordable to people earning 60 percent or less of the area median income dwindled to only 5,300 in 2011.

Davis says that, “Arlington should follow Fairfax’s County’s outstanding example with a housing authority that provides more affordable housing to more people at less cost.” In 2011 Fairfax County’s Redevelopment and Housing Authority (FCRHA) provided rental housing for nearly 3,000 people with average household income of $20,000 and another 20,000 people with average income of $26,000. It also provides subsidized workforce housing for entry level teachers, nurses, police, and firefighters.