How hard is it for a Seattle couple to find a one-bedroom apartment for $1,446?
A Seattle City Council committee gave the nod this week to a bill that provides a tax break to developers for buildings with 20 percent of units targeting people making 80 or 90 percent of the median income.
It’s an extension of a subsidy Seattle’s had since 2004 that’s aimed at keeping some rents lower. The earlier subsidy targeted tenants making 60 to 70 percent of median income.
Critics say the extension is one step away from a payoff for housing the city’s middle class.
Have we reached the point where such housing needs taxpayer support to exist?
Some say it’s not needed, like the residents and community organizers who testified at Wednesday’s council meeting and council member Nick Licata. They say the city already has plenty of housing available in exactly this price range and the subsidy is just a developer giveaway for rents the market already provides.
But other council members and officials at the planning and housing departments say they are concerned about carving out a piece of the pie for middle class renters in the future. With development moving fast and furious across the city, they fear housing for people at the middle of the income chart won’t be there without a subsidy.
Read the full story at Djc.com. The full council votes June 30.