Atlanta considers recurring fund to support affordable housing

A new proposal by Atlanta City Council members would establish an annual fund for affordable housing in the city.

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For the first time, Atlanta may establish an annual fund for affordable housing.

The city has made one-time investments in affordability before. Last year, Atlanta created a $50 million bond for housing needs.

But, the city hasn’t had a regular source of funding in its budget before, which is what the new housing trust fund, proposed by Atlanta City Council members, would do.

In every annual budget, 2% would go toward efforts to create new rental units and help residents stay in their homes.

“So every fiscal year, we’ll have another $14 million,” said City Council member Matt Westmoreland, one of the legislation’s sponsors. “And as the general fund grows, so too will our allocation.”

The city plans to ease into the fund-starting with only 1% in the first year and 1.5% in the second. Invest Atlanta would manage the money.

The proposal requires an amendment to the city’s charter and two votes of approval from the full City Council. Members already approved the legislation at their Nov. 15 meeting. They’re set to make a final vote on the fund Monday.