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Charleston Housing Authority pledges 250 rent vouchers for city's future affordable housing

By The Post and Courier:  Abigail Darlington Dec 22, 2017 Updated Dec 22, 2017

The Charleston Housing Authority is setting aside up to 250 Housing Choice Vouchers for future tenants of the city's planned affordable housing projects.

The vouchers would total $1.5 million annually for at least 10 years to help very low-income households pay rent once the apartments are available, the authority said in a statement.

The city plans to build or redevelop more than 800 rental units with $20 million from a bond issue that voters approved in November.

The Charleston region is in the grips of a housing crisis due to its growing population, rapidly rising rents and a shrinking supply of affordable units.

The city's efforts could add a measure of affordability back into the market, but housing experts say municipalities also should look at encouraging more market-rate housing developments to help meet the demand.

A preliminary plan for the city's housing projects was presented to City Council in September. It detailed different strategies the city's Department of Housing and Community Development could use to leverage its money with other grants and land donations.

Specific details about the projects, including locations and possible start dates, haven't been announced.

While those efforts will help create new housing across the city, the Housing Authority's commitment of vouchers will ensure that at least 250 individuals or families earning 30 percent of the area's median income will be able to rent them.

The authority will give first priority to housing on the peninsula for the first 10 years, according to the statement.


Reach Abigail Darlington at 843-937-5906 and follow her on Twitter @A_Big_Gail.

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A message from our President/Chief Executive Officer:

The Housing Authority of the City of Charleston was born of action on December 18, 1934 by a vote of the Charleston City Council. However, the actual permission for such a "creation" came via statute in the South Carolina General Assembly in March of 1934.

We have come a long way in our society, our City and our personal relationships. Nevertheless, the need for Public housing still exists today. We have so much more to do before we can truly say, the job is done.

Donald J. Cameron
President/Chief Executive Officer
Housing Authority of the City of Charleston