Chip head shot 2  State Sen. Chip Shi elds   
     May 12, 2015
    Media contact: Amanda Hess, Chief Advisor




Senator Shields carries affordable housing legislation to passage in Senate 


Salem, OR - Senator Chip Shields (D-Portland) carried affordable housing legislation to passage in the State Senate today. House Bill 3082, sponsored by Representative Lew Frederick (D-Portland) and Shields, creates the option for local jurisdictions to allow families in affordable housing to stay in their homes while working their way out of poverty.


"Everyone needs a safe, affordable place to call home," said Sen. Shields on the Senate floor. "Too often families cannot afford fair market rent, especially in rapidly gentrifying areas like North and Northeast Portland. Affordable housing helps families build the stability needed for long-term success and House Bill 3082 will help families transition to fair market housing."


Currently, when a low-income family in nonprofit affordable housing earns just one dollar over 60 percent of Area Median Income, their housing no longer qualifies for the Nonprofit Low Income Property Tax Exemption and the nonprofit who owns the property receives a property tax bill. The family then faces the dilemma of not qualifying to stay in their home, but also not being able to afford fair market rent.


HB 3082 allows local jurisdictions the option to choose the 60 percent Area Median Income (AMI) cap or to allow the income of existing residents to rise above 60 percent but no higher than 80 percent AMI. The bill was brought to the Legislature by Portland Community Reinvestment Initiatives Inc. (PCRI), an affordable housing nonprofit which operates in N/NE Portland.


"The option created by HB 3082 will provide stability for families when their income goes up a little bit. This change will provide struggling families an opportunity for a smooth transition rather than a 'cliff' as they work toward homeownership or private market housing," said Representative Lew Frederick (D-Portland).


HB 3082 passed the Senate on a 26-4 vote and is on its way to the Governor for her signature.