Monthly Archives: March 2017

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    Community Information: King County Housing Authority (KCHA) will accept applications to its Housing Choice Voucher (Section 8) lottery April 5- 18

Community Information: King County Housing Authority (KCHA) will accept applications to its Housing Choice Voucher (Section 8) lottery April 5- 18

March 31st, 2017|

The  information below is from the King County Housing Authority. As access to affordable housing is a major issue in our community and in our county, I wanted to alert you to the following information that applications are being accepted for the Housing Choice Voucher (Section 8) lottery:

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KCHA will open its Housing Choice Voucher (Section 8) waiting list for the second time since 2011. We will be accepting applications from Wednesday, April 5 through 4 p.m. PST on Tuesday April 18. Registration is free and available only at www.kcha.org.

With nearly half the households in King County paying more than they can afford for housing, 8,486 homeless school children, and more than 10,000 homeless people counted in the 2016 annual point-in-time census, Housing Choice vouchers are an essential resource for our most vulnerable community members.

On the business side – more than 2,500 landlords/property owners participate in the program.

KING COUNTY HOUSING AUTHORITY TO OPEN HOUSING CHOICE VOUCHER (SECTION 8) WAITING LIST APRIL 5 -18

With a record number of low-income households around King County struggling to pay the rent, the King County Housing Authority will be re-opening its waiting list for Housing Choice (Section 8) vouchers for only the second time since 2011.

From Wednesday, April 5 through Tuesday, April 18 at 4 p.m. PDT, households in need of rental assistance can apply for KCHA’s Housing Choice Voucher (Section 8) program waitlist. Registration for the lottery is free and available only at www.kcha.org.

            The program currently provides rental subsidies to over 11,300 low-income households with more than 28,400 family members in King County outside of Seattle and Renton. Fifty-seven percent of participating households have at least one elderly or disabled member. More than 11,000 children are currently housed with these subsidies, most of which flow to the over 2,500 private landlords participating in the program.

“The region’s extraordinary increase in rents is leaving far too many community members behind. Housing Choice Vouchers – rental assistance ─ is an essential resource for our most vulnerable neighbors – low-wage families with children, elderly households, people with disabilities, and veterans. Without this resource many of these households would be homeless,” said KCHA Executive Director Stephen Norman. “Having stable housing is critical to other important community issues, including school success for children and better health and reduced health-care costs for seniors

According to the American Communities Survey (2011-2015) 47 percent of rental households in King County are considered cost-burdened and pay more than they can afford for housing. During the 2015-16 school year school districts in King County reported 8,486 homeless school children. King County’s 2016 annual point-in-time-homeless census reported over 10,000 people living unsheltered or in emergency or transitional housing on a single night.

The Housing Choice Voucher program enables low-income families to find a home in the private rental market. Generally, KCHA pays the difference between the rent charged by a landlord and the assisted family’s rental contribution, which is set at approximately 30 percent of the household’s income.

The need for this program has far exceeded available resources. In 2015 when the waiting list was last open, KCHA received 22,000 applications from eligible households from which 2,500 families were randomly selected by lottery for the waiting list. KCHA has now served nearly everyone on that list.

KCHA expects thousands of families to apply for the openings. It will conduct a computerized lottery among qualified families to select 3,500 households which will be placed in random order on the waiting list.

How quickly households will be served depends in large part on where Congress goes with the funding of this program. Cuts proposed by the current administration would reduce this program by some 200,000 households nationally over the next year.

The chances of being selected for the waiting list are the same no matter when households apply during the open registration period. KCHA will notify families by the end of May if they are being placed on the application list.

More information about applicant eligibility, free online computer access, or assistance with the application process can be found at https://www.kcha.org/housing/vouchers/questions/

KCHA is an independent municipal corporation established under Washington state law. It assists more than 18,000 households in the Seattle metropolitan region. The Authority administers rental housing assistance, develops and manages affordable housing and works closely with community stakeholders to reduce homelessness, improve educational outcomes for the region’s low-income youth and assure that disabled and elderly households can live with dignity.

Governor Jay Inslee signs levy cliff bill

March 15th, 2017|

On Wednesday, March 15, Gov. Jay Inslee signed the levy cliff bill, SB 5023, preventing the largest funding cut to K-12 schools in state history. The legislation delays a scheduled reduction in the money school districts can collect through local property taxes already approved by voters.

From the start of this legislative session, Senate Democrats fought day after day to bring the levy cliff bill up for a vote in an effort to prevent a $358 million cut to schools across our state. Finally, after countless calls, emails and personal visits from students, teachers, principals, superintendents, parents and others, Senate Republicans relented and allowed a vote last week on SB 5023. The bill passed with only one vote in opposition.

With passage of the levy cliff bill, Senate Democrats have cleared the path for the Legislature to focus on fully and fairly funding K-12 education in our state. We hope Republicans will join us in this effort to strengthen education for Washington’s  1.1 million students.

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    Kuderer: “Action on the levy cliff a huge win, now we must focus on funding education”

Kuderer: “Action on the levy cliff a huge win, now we must focus on funding education”

March 8th, 2017|

Sen. Patty Kuderer, D-Bellevue, issued the following statement after the Senate voted to take action on the levy cliff bill, Senate Bill 5023, preventing a $358 million cut to school districts across the state:

“School districts, teachers, and kids across the state will have some certainty tonight after passage of the levy cliff bill. Their locally approved funding will not be cut by the Legislature. This is what I and other Senate Democrats have been pushing for since the House passed the bill 44 days ago.

“Passage of this bill is a huge win for our state’s 1.1 million students who rely on high-quality teachers, low class sizes, and support in the classroom.

“It’s time to return to the hard work necessary to fully and fairly fund K-12 education in our state. The clock is ticking on McCleary and our state’s kids, their parents, educators, administrators and school districts are counting on us.  Let’s focus and get to work.”