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Affordable housing

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Quick Hit
by Ashlee Rezin
5:24pm
Tue Jul 30, 2013

Activists Call On CHA To Develop Plans For Increased Public Housing (VIDEO)

Housing activists are calling on the Chicago Housing Authority's (CHA) Board of Commissioners to refrain from considering proposals that sell or swap portions of vacant land to various entities, such as the city of Chicago. The land, protesters said, should instead be used to replace public housing that has been torn down under the agency’s Plan for Transformation.

Gathered outside of CHA’s downtown headquarters Monday, roughly 30 activists criticized proposed development plans, such as tennis courts and a retail facility, on CHA-owned vacant land formerly occupied by public housing.

“There’s no plan to replace the housing that we know of,” said Roderick Wilson, executive director of the Lugenia Burns Hope Center, and organizer of the protest. “When the CHA came up with this Plan for Transformation to demolish public housing and to rebuild and transform it, they promised replacement housing that wouldn’t concentrate poverty. But where is it?”

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
1:27pm
Thu Jun 27, 2013

Housing Costs Severely Burden Millions Of Americans, Reaches A Record High

The U.S. housing recovery is gaining traction due in part to an increase in multi-family housing construction and rising home prices, according to the annual State of the Nation’s Housing report released Wednesday by the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University.

Despite areas of improvement, the report found that millions of American homeowners are still late on mortgage payments or owe more than what their homes are actually worth, and low-income households face continued challenges finding affordable housing.

The number of Americans shouldering severe housing cost burdens has also set a new record, according to the report.

Quick Hit
by Ashlee Rezin
12:39pm
Mon Apr 29, 2013

Uptown Residents Rally Against Proposed School Closures, Gentrification (VIDEO)

Quanzina Haynes plans to pull her children from the Chicago Public Schools (CPS) district if the Chicago Board of Education votes in favor of closing their school, Graeme Stewart Elementary.

“The closure for me would really mean a hardship for my family, because I feel I have no choice but to enroll my kids in a Catholic school,” said Haynes, 33, a single mother of two sons, ages eight and 10.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
5:33pm
Tue Apr 23, 2013

Uptown Residents Decry Proposed $220 Million Luxury Housing Development At 46th Ward Zoning Meeting

Opponents of a planned $220 million luxury residential building in Uptown were ignored and not permitted to ask the 46th Ward’s Zoning and Development Committee questions about the project at its meeting Monday night.

Members of the advisory committee, put in place by Ald. James Cappleman (46th), adjourned its monthly meeting at Weiss Memorial Hospital despite multiple people who had waited patiently with their hands raised to comment on the plan, which calls for 842 mostly high-income units.

“We are totally opposed to this plan,” Marc Kaplan of Northside Action for Justice shouted as some committee members quickly filed past him out of the the hospital’s auditorium.

Quick Hit
by Ashlee Rezin
8:07pm
Wed Mar 27, 2013

Minimum Wage Workers In Illinois Must Work More Than 80 Hours Per Week To Afford Rent

Minimum wage workers in Illinois must work 82 hours per week — more than double the hours of a standard work week — and 52 weeks a year, in order to afford to rent a safe, reasonable apartment unit, according to a recent report by the National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC).

An Illinois renter must earn $17.02 per hour to afford the Fair Market Rent (FMR) price of $885 for a two-bedroom apartment, according to the report. That translates to $2,949 per month in income, or $35,392 annually, to ensure the renter spends less than 30 percent of their income on housing.

But the minimum wage in Illinois is $8.25. Meaning, minimum wage workers must work a staggering amount to avoid destitution.

Quick Hit
by Ashlee Rezin
5:32pm
Tue Mar 5, 2013

Illinois Among Nation's Worst In Affordable Housing For Extremely Low-Income Renters

Illinois’ extremely low-income renters are in dire need of affordable housing, according to a recent report issued by the National Low Income Housing Coalition and Housing Action Illinois.

According to the report, for every 100 extremely low-income households in Illinois, there are only 28 available and affordable rental homes. In Illinois, a family of four is considered extremely low-income if their annual income is less than or at $21,650, which is 30 percent of the area median income.

Extremely low-income renters typically spend more than half their income on rent, according to researchers.

“When you are paying 60 or 70 percent of your income toward your housing costs, there’s not much money left for the other necessities of life, such as food, medical costs or investing in your education,” said Bob Palmer, policy director for the statewide housing coalition, Housing Action Illinois.

Quick Hit
by Matthew Blake
3:17pm
Fri Aug 24, 2012

City Homeless Plan Includes Outsourcing Overnight Transport Services

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced a plan yesterday for which the city will spend $2.5 million a year to help its homeless residents. AFSCME Council 31 public employees union is upset about the plan because the strategy will outsource the city’s overnight homeless transport service.

Privatization plan aside, the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless says that Emanuel has at least taken steps toward identifying the scope of the homelessness problem in the city.

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