Affordable Housing, State News, Supportive Housing

Housing Support In New Budget


The budget compromise agreed to by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and the Democratic legislative leadership - approved Thursday by the Appropriations and Finance Committees  - offers extensive new support for affordable housing creation and permanent supportive housing to continue to eradicate homelessness.

"Gov. Malloy and state lawmakers clearly understand that Connecticut needs a much wider array of affordable, mixed-income and supportive housing, and they have come through with an unprecedented commitment to that goal," said Howard G. Rifkin, interim executive director of the Partnership for Strong Communities. "Housing truly is the foundation of opportunity, and this investment will provide homes, jobs, economic growth and opportunities for thousands of state residents."

The bond package approved Thursday by the Finance Committee includes $100 million in new capital for affordable housing over the biennium and an additional $30 million to create 150 new units of supportive housing. Both capital initiatives were originally proposed by Gov. Malloy in his February budget presentation.

In addition, the Appropriations Committee voted to provide nearly $1.4 million to the Departments of Social Services and Mental Health and Addiction Services for rental assistance and services to support the new residents of the supportive units to be financed with the $30 million in new capital.

Significantly, the budget includes authorization to expand the FUSE program for frequent users of expensive health, mental health and other state services so they can be served in less expensive, more effective supportive housing units with related services. The authorization would allow the creation, within available appropriations, of 160 new FUSE units for individuals and families. The Office of Policy and Management, DSS, DMHAS, the Department of Correction and Court Support Services Division within the Judicial Branch will enter into a Memorandum of Understanding to provide the necessary funding. There are currently 80 FUSE units authorized statewide.

The budget also included approximately $500,000 for Regional Planning Organizations to incentivize consolidation and $4 million in PILOT payments and tax abatements for municipalities with public housing to mitigate rent increases for public housing residents.

April Bond Agenda Includes Funding For Housing

Meanwhile, Gov. Malloy has proposed to continue his commitment to affordable housing creation with more than $10 million in new capital spending for housing and housing-related items in the next State Bond Commission agenda. The meeting is scheduled for April 29.

The agenda would include $3 million for a 104-unit mixed-income project in New Haven called Trinity Rowe. Three fourths of the units would be for residents earning 60% of the area median income or less, while one fourth would be reserved for those making 60-80% of the area median income. Another $3.8 million would help finance a 47-unit project in Bridgeport, which would include 10 permanent supportive housing units. In addition, the agenda includes $2.5 million for brownfield remediation projects and $2 million for gap financing from DECD's Flex program.


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