Local Groups Take Affordable Housing Issue to the Capitol

February 05, 2018 07:16 PM

(ABC 6 News)-- Several groups are working simultaneously to tackle the affordable housing crisis in Rochester.

About 30 of those organizations, lawmakers, and locals came together to push for help from the capitol.


"Homes for All" is a statewide coalition made up of nearly 200 organizations, including the Rochester Area Habitat for Humanity.

Though it’s been around since 2012, Homes for All held its first meeting in Rochester on Monday. 

"Affordable housing is becoming harder and harder to find,” said Ryan Kling-Punt, the Community Outreach Manager for Rochester Area Habitat for Humanity. "The main goal of Homes for All is to influence policy at the state legislature."

Each year, Homes for All focuses on endorsing one policy.

“In 2018, Homes for All is asking for $140 million dollars in bonds for housing to help children learn, workers earn and seniors thrive,” said Co-Chair of the advocacy group, Senta Leff.

Funds go towards a variety of projects. "From housing projects for older Minnesotans to providing temporary homes for the homeless to making housing more affordable for first time home buyers," said Kling-Punt.

Stats from Homes for All show the median home value in Olmsted County increasing 10% from 2000 to 2015, while rent has gone up 8% during that same time frame.

The affordable housing projects will be spread throughout the state.

“Minnesota has strong bipartisan support for housing. Our lawmakers know that it is a statewide issue,” said Leff.

Since 2012, Homes for All has secured $270 million in investments for affordable housing. According to the coalition, work on 3,800 homes can begin if they are able to get bonding in this year.


Hannah Tiede

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