Washington Legislative Summer 2019 Update

Happy July.  Today, we take notice of some of the effects of recent legislation and a HUD rulemaking. You can read up on the key achievements of the 2019 session here.

Local Government Action Needed to Receive Revenue for Affordable Housing
One of the more important affordable housing achievements of the 2019 Legislative Session will only matter if your local government takes action within the next 12 months. HB 1406 provides a sales tax revenue sharing option for local governments for buying, fixing up and building affordable housing as well as for operations and maintenance of new affordable or supportive housing facilities. Cities can also issue bonds to finance the authorized projects. However, according to a recent article by the Association of Washington Cities, there are tight timelines that must be met to access this funding source – the first is January 31, 2020 to pass a resolution of intent. The article provides a sample resolution. This is the time to engage your partners and local government in determining whether to take advantage of this opportunity.

Child Care Subsidy Program Shifts to Department of Children, Youth and Families
As a result of legislation from the 2018 session, the Child Care Subsidy Program will transition from the Department of Social and Health Services effective July 1 to the Department of Children, Youth, and Families (DCYF), creating the DCYF Child Care Subsidy Contact Center. The goal of HB 2816 was to consolidate all of the Working Connections Child Care program within one department. 

United Way Program Helps Reduce Evictions - Legislation Provides More Time
In an article by
Crosscut, you can read how legislation this year is working with a new United Way program in Seattle to prevent evictions.  The United Way of King County Home Base program provides one-time emergency funds to pay rent while SB 5600 increases eviction notice from 3 days to 14 days. The bill becomes effective on July 28 but the Home Base program is already making a difference in people’s lives.

Public Comment Deadline for HUD "Mixed-Status" Rulemaking is July 9
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has published a proposed rule that would prohibit “mixed-status" families from living in public housing and Section 8 programs. Mixed-status families are households that include both members who are eligible and ineligible for housing assistance based on their immigration status.  HUD's analysis of this proposed rule  indicates that over 25,000 families of mixed immigration status would be affected. Comments are due by July 9, 2019.  Here's an online comment form suggested by the Washington Low-Income Alliance.

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