From Ann Tiech - Vice President, North Austin Civic Association:
I hope you will try to make the Bond Task Force community meeting that will take place at Lanier High School on Thursday, May 3, 6:30-8:30PM.
This will be one of the last times citizens can communicate with the Citizen Bond Election Advisory Task Force members before they make their final recommendations to the City Council in May.
North Austin neighborhood leaders have been working hard to convince the Bond Task Force members how much we need transportation and mobility improvements in the N. Lamar/Burnet Rd. corridors. As of tonight, the BTF members have recommended $34,200,000 for Phase 1 N. Lamar & Burnet Rd. corridor improvements. That’s a great start, and we don’t want them to reduce that amount in their final recommendations.
So, please come out and tell the Task Force members how much we need those transportation and mobility improvements.
Another portion of the bond that I recommend for support is the $110 million being proposed for affordable housing. Affordable housing is a broad term that encompasses apartments/houses that are affordable to teachers, police officers, firefighters, construction workers, etc., as well as permanent supportive housing at apartment complexes like Foundation Communities’ Spring Terrace for chronically homeless individuals. We all benefit when middle income people can afford to live in the city in which they work, and homeless persons are moved into housing so that they can receive the services they need to remain housed. We have many chronically homeless people in our neighborhood, so an increase in permanent supportive housing would help get some of them off our streets. That’s good from a humanitarian standpoint and from an economic standpoint (chronically homeless people cost more to support on the street than they do to support in housing).
By the way, the housing monies being proposed for housing homeless individuals and families would in all probability go to respected, responsible affordable housing developers like Foundation Communities (www.foundcom.org), St. Louise House (www.stlouisehouse.org) , Green Doors (www.greendoors.org) , etc. These nonprofits would have to apply to the city for the money and go through a rigorous vetting process.
I hope to see you at Lanier on May 3!