Affordable housing | WYPR

Affordable housing

John Lee

The clash between residents of an historically African American neighborhood in East Towson and a developer of affordable housing is coming down to a final legal battle.

Both sides squared off Wednesday before Administrative Law Judge Maureen Murphy, who will settle the dispute.

SCREENSHOT VIA GOVERNOR LARRY HOGAN FACEBOOK PAGE

Gov. Larry Hogan announced a financial assistance package Thursday afternoon that will protect small businesses struggling because of the pandemic.

The package includes an executive order that will protect businesses from sudden or substantial increases in their unemployment taxes.


“This emergency relief will help businesses keep their operations going and to help keep more people on their payrolls,” Hogan said.

CREDIT AP/PATRICK SEMANSKY

Mayor Jack Young has signed a bill into law guaranteeing lawyers for renters facing eviction, making Baltimore the seventh jurisdiction in the country to enact such legislation.

The bill, which the City Council passed unanimously in November, will be phased in over four years.

"The Bottom Is Falling Out": Affordable Housing And COVID-19

Oct 28, 2020
Eli Pousson / Baltimore Heritage via Flickr (Public Domain)

The affordable housing crisis has wreaked havoc on Baltimoreans for decades, and the economic fallout from the coronavirus has only exacerbated the problem. On this month's episode of Future City we're exploring how COVID-19 is affecting housing in Baltimore and beyond. We discuss the disproportionate impact on Black and Latinx Baltimoreans, including the ways that some immigrants have been left out from receiving stimulus benefits. We also hear about the challenges to building affordable housing nationally and discuss the steps housing advocates want the local, state and federal governments to take to protect renters, including ending evictions and canceling rent payments.

John Lee

Residents of an historically African American neighborhood in East Towson are lobbying against plans for an affordable housing development. Those descendants of slaves who once labored at Hampton Plantation in Baltimore County, fear the project threatens the existence of their neighborhood. 

Baltimore County finds itself caught between those residents, and an agreement it has with the federal government to provide additional affordable housing.

County officials say it is also their moral obligation to do so.

Rachel Baye / WYPR

The House voted Tuesday to pass a bill barring landlords and anyone selling a home from discriminating against a prospective tenant or buyer based on their source of income.

The Senate already passed the bill last month. The bill passed both chambers mostly along party lines but with veto-proof majorities.

John Lee

 

 

Controversial legislation that would ban landlords in Baltimore County from rejecting someone because they are using a housing voucher, commonly called section 8, is to be introduced next week at the County Council. 

 

The so-called “source of income discrimination legislation” was soundly defeated when it last went before the council three years ago.

 

 

John Lee

The joke in Towson is that its town bird is the construction crane. More than a half dozen of them are part of the skyline, as Towson transforms into what one developer said will rival College Park as Maryland’s best college town. 

 

There is excitement about what Towson is becoming, as well as concern about what all of those changes will mean for Baltimore County’s county seat.

 

 

Less is More: Tiny Homes and Affordable Housing

Nov 15, 2017

This month on Future City – the average house size in America is somewhere around twenty-six-hundred square feet... but many people are saying “no” to “bigger is better” – instead opting to live in so-called “tiny homes” – some as small as one-hundred-eighty square feet… Wes talks with people so passionate about this movement they made a podcast out of it – The Tiny House Podcast – along with social innovators looking to use tiny homes as a solution to homelessness. 

Joel McCord and John Lee, of the WYPR news team, discuss a measure making its way through the General Assembly that would keep landlords from automatically turning down renters with housing vouchers.