Washington’s supply and demand imbalance of housing of all kinds is playing out today in the affordable housing and homelessness crises in communities across the state. One study suggests the shortage is more than 225,000 units, according to a news release from the Department of Commerce.
To help communities address this growing challenge, Commerce this week announced $1.7 million in grants for 28 communities to develop housing action plans (HAP) or implement adopted HAP strategies to meet their housing needs. Of that, $75,000 will go to Napavine.
“This funding puts tools in the hands of community leaders to take steps to address housing capacity at the local level,” said Commerce Director Lisa Brown. “Planning for adequate affordable housing at all income levels strengthens communities and supports vibrant, equitable economies that allow more people to live and work where they want.”
The $1.7 million adds on to the first round of grants by the department that awarded 44 communities $3.5 million in November 2021.
The Legislature created the grant program in 2019 to help address the statewide housing affordability crisis and encourage local communities to prioritize creation of affordable, inclusive neighborhoods. Amendments to the Growth Management Act housing goal in 2021 now require communities to plan for and accommodate housing affordable to all economic segments, promote a variety of residential densities and housing types, and encourage preservation of existing housing stock.