Affordable housing is the new political motherhood and apple pie issue

 We all want people to have a place to live. Affordable housing is the new political motherhood and apple pie issue today. (a quote from Sean Roth 2004).  Affordable housing refers to subsidized housing for low income people.  Want a flawed scheme?  It’s affordable housing provided by a land trust.  To eliminate the cost of the land, the land trust buys it or has it donated so builders can construct affordable housing.  Being a nonprofit, it doesn’t pay taxes and the land is not taxed. Who pays for these increased services needed for the untaxed land? We all do. Many on fixed incomes are literally being taxed out of their homes because the city, county and state are never satisfied. These land trusts (NGO’s —non government organizations) are acquiring millions of acres of land worth billions of dollars. Not only do private individuals donate land but taxpayers give billions of dollars in grants to help them acquire all this land. Because NGO’s are not a government organization, we the people no longer own  or control it. Being a non-profit just means they have to use all the money up. You are supporting their causes with your taxes.  If they received no grants and paid taxes to support their causes, what would that do to your taxes? To funds for police, fire, hospitals, schools, running local government ? To the national debt? Private property rights are the basis for all our other rights. How do land trusts affect the value of your land? Your ability to not be taxed out of your land?                                                                                       Growth management laws restrict a county and city’s ability to control land use. The GMA is one reason we have the affordable housing shortage now. By getting rid of the GMA and stopping the cities and counties from using zoning to decide where you can build and what you can build, more affordable housing would be built.  It’s not about people in the planning committee deciding what they want, it’s about providing for the people who need housing now.  If you are trying to provide a lot of housing in a short period of time, single family dwellings do not make sense.  Apartments can be built quicker and more economically than a series of single family dwellings.  Land trusts limit the supply when the demand is huge.  How much does the Opal Community Land trust spend on affordable housing and how much does it spend on salaries, pensions, & professional service contracts? There will always be those who seek to exploit a situation for their benefit or for the benefit of the people they represent.  Maybe we need to start over and use local people to solve the affordable housing problem. Why do we always get an expert from somewhere else to fix our problem. We elected locals to represent us.  They need to find locals with skin in the game to fix our problems. Keep our money local. Our community needs good paying jobs too.

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