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Reimagining California's housing policy with an equity lens

In response to COVID-19, Tia Boatman Patterson, executive director of the CalHFA, praised the CalHFA team and the heroic efforts of the staff to provide services to the state but she insists it is important to remain especially diligent about the impacts of COVID on the state’s most vulnerable populations.

She highlighted that while the majority of properties managed by or in partnership with CalHFA have rental protection under the CARES Act, a large portion of California’s low-income renters live in homes owned by small landlords who rent rooms or the entire home to tenants. Boatman Patterson compares small landlords to small business owners and highlights that neither they nor the renters have protection under the CARES Act. She stresses the importance of taking a holistic approach that protects the housing supply for this group for the benefit of the state.

California Economic Summit • November 10, 2020

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Nov. 17th, 2020 - Policy Digest 9

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The pandemic has exacerbated housing instability for renters of color

As recent analyses show, renters of color are experiencing disproportionate negative outcomes from COVID-19. Communities of color, disadvantaged from a long history of racism that has undermined their financial stability and housing security, now find their hardships further exacerbated by the ongoing pandemic. Homelessness prevention and housing security programs and policies need to include and prioritize a race-conscious framework. Without rapid action that centers the needs of communities of color and makes investments in long-term solutions, the future will hold even more inequality and continued unfairness.

Center for American Progress • October 30, 2020

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King County, Washington, Charter Amendment 2, remove county restriction on real property sale for affordable housing

King County Charter Amendment 2, a charter amendment to remove the fair market value restriction on real property sales by the county for affordable housing, was approved on November 3, 2020.

Charter Amendment 2 will remove the charter restriction on the county's authority to transfer, lease, or sell real property held by metropolitan function funds at less than fair market value if conveyed for affordable housing purposes.

Ballotpedia • November 3, 2020

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How insurance carriers use crime scores to assess risk in the affordable housing industry

Many insurance carriers use third-party crime scores to evaluate their exposure to criminal risk when underwriting general liability insurance policies. At worst, a high crime score may preclude the owner of a multifamily housing complex from obtaining insurance coverage, and at best, a high crime score may result in higher premium costs. These underwriting practices are especially impactful to the affordable housing community because affordable housing may be in areas with higher crime scores when compared with traditional multifamily properties. Thus, affordable housing providers are highly likely to experience a loss of coverage or relatively high insurance premiums.

Scott Insurance, SAHF, and Virginia Community Capital • October 28, 2020

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