From Alliance for Housing Solutions <[email protected]>
Subject Community Conversation on March 21, Black History Month Recap & Regional Housing Plan Overview
Date February 28, 2023 9:14 PM
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Read the latest news from the Alliance for Housing Solutions

** Notes from the Executive Director
Dear AHS Friends and Supporters,

On the final day of Black History Month, I'm grateful for the opportunities the month brought to lift up the African American voice in Arlington's history. You may have seen our weekly social media posts highlighting AHS' historical resources on housing and race in Arlington or attended our first Community Conversation in Halls Hill on February 8 (you can read more in the recap below).

At a time where there is still much debate over what an #ArlingtonforEveryone looks like, our community conversations are one way we are working to bridge the gap and build an Arlington that reflects our diversity and works for all of us.

Our next Community Conversation is on March 21st and will focus on tips everyone can use to advocate for local government funding of affordable housing programs (more details below).

Thank you for your support and the work you continue to do to bring us closer to our goal of an inclusive community where everyone can afford to live.

With Gratitude,
Make A Donation ([link removed])

** News

** Advocacy Opportunities to Support the Most Expansive Middle Housing Ordinance
March brings a plethora of opportunities to urge the County Board to support the most expansive Missing Middle Housing ordinance. The community feedback form also remains open, which can be accessed here ([link removed]>) . You can also email the County Board with your support at [email protected].

The County Board needs to hear from all of us and this is how we do it!

March 6 at 7 PM- Attend/speak at the March Planning Commission Meeting: ([link removed]) (virtual/hybrid)
March 18 at 7 PM- Attend/speak at the March Planning Commission Meeting: ([link removed]) ([link removed]) (virtual/hybrid)

Mondays at 7 PM- Join “Virtual Open Door Monday” ([link removed]) (every Monday)

** County Holds Budget Hearing
[link removed]

The County Manager presented his Proposed FY 2024 Budget (http:// [link removed]) to the County Board at the monthly Board meeting in February. In the coming months, the Board will engage in a series of work sessions with County departments, commissions and schools to determine the FY 2024 adopted budget.

Of note, the Funding Summary shows that approximately $76.7 million in funding is being allocated for FY 2024 programs to preserve affordable housing and assist persons to meet their housing needs. Local tax dollar support for these programs totals approximately $46.2 million, or 5.0 percent of County government operations (General Fund excluding School’s transfer).

On March 9, the Board will hold a work session on the budget,which can be viewed here. (http:// [link removed]) AHS will be tracking these discussions. Watch our social media!

Do you have comments about the Proposed Budget? If so, submit your feedback to the County Board via email at [email protected] .

** In Case You Missed It: Regional Fair Housing Hearing
Last Thursday, Arlington County, the NAACP's Arlington Branch, and the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (COG) hosted a panel to discuss the newly released Regional Fair Housing Plan and its impacts on Arlington. Several years in the making, the Regional Fair Housing Plan contains comprehensive data about how housing segregation has impacted our community, including disparate access to quality education and healthy neighborhoods, and it shares goals to address these disparities and other issues.

The comment period on the Regional Housing Plan is open through March 31, 2023. The comment form can be accessedhere ([link removed]) .

Review theFair Housing Plan ([link removed])

Questions? Email [email protected] (mailto:[email protected])

Comment by mail at [email protected] (mailto:[email protected]) , by voicemail at 202-962-3794 or TDD at 202-962-3213, or by mail at MWCOG, 777 N. Capitol Street, NW, Suite 300, Washington DC 20002, Attn: Fair Housing.
To view Arlington's February panel discussion, click here ([link removed]) .

** Inclement Weather No Hinderance to Missing Middle Rally

Photo Credit: Mark Hand, The Patch

AHS Board Members Jane Green and Pamela Quanrud were among the 200 people who rallied at Courthouse Plaza last Saturday in support of Missing Middle, despite inclement weather.

Green, speaking on behalf of YIMBYs of Northern Virginia, said that the rally organizers are demanding that the board, in its vote next month, allow up to six-unit homes through by right zoning on residential lots across Arlington, according to an article in The Patch ([link removed]) .

Quanrud, appearing on behalf of the League of Women Voters, noted that Missing Middle is needed to reverse historic systemic racsim in residential zoning. "We believe in higher-density zoning in low-density areas," said Quanrud.

** Meet the AHS Board: Board Secretary Laura Martin
Welcome to our new feature, Meet the AHS Board! In it, we're profiling our board members working tirelessly towards AHS' mission of affordable, inclusive, and diverse housing in Arlington. Our first feature is Board Secretary, Laura Martin, an associate pastor at Rock Spring Congregational United Church of Christ. Her work focuses on social action, mission issues, and pastoral care.

What drove your interest in AHS?

As an ordained pastor, my faith calls me to "do justice, love kindness and walk humbly with God," as the prophet Micah says. Housing is a central justice issue in our time. Prior to joining the AHS Board, I worked with families and individuals experiencing homelessness at New Hope Housing and then Shelter House.

I saw how inequities in our system keep people in poverty, and how systemic racism and inherited wealth create an uneven playing field. I have a vision of Arlington as a more welcoming and just community where immigrants and bus drivers, day care workers and teachers, can afford to live. I am proud of the work that AHS has done to call attention to race and housing and to work for a better community.

What are your AHS goals for 2023?

My AHS goal for 2023 is to continue to use my voice to speak to the intersection of faith and housing. I recently spoke at the Faith and Housing forum that AHS, NAACP, and Arlington Coalition of Black Clergy all co-sponsored.

As a pastor, I feel called to articulate the moral charge of this moment to make choices on zoning and housing policy. These policies profoundly impact who can live and thrive in Arlington.

** Event

** March 21st Community Conversation on Local Budget Advocacy
Arlington County has begun the budget development process for the next fiscal year. Citizen engagement is a critical opportunity for members of the community to voice their opinions, concerns, and ensure that the budget reflects community needs and priorities.

Please join AHS and the Northern Virginia Affordable Housing Alliance for a lunchtime community conversation on Tuesday, March 21 at 12 PM for a virtual discussion on tips, strategies, and tools on how to engage your local leaders on the budget process.

This is an opportunity to hear from organization leaders, policy experts, and others on the behind-the-scenes budget process, why your advocacy matters, and much more.

Spanish language translation available.

Please register here. ([link removed])

** Event Recap
AHS Kicks Off First Community Conversation For Black History Month
On February 8, AHS, in partnership with the Arlington Branch of the NAACP and the Arlington Coalition of Black Clergy, hosted a community conversation on "Faith and Housing" at Mount Salvation Baptist Church in the historic Halls Hill neighborhood.

AHS board member Laura Martin and policy analyst Alice Hogan paticipated in a panel discussion on Missing Middle Housing, the history of housing segregation in Arlington, and why now is "our time to loose the bonds of injustice" and end "gentrification without opening opportunity."

View the conversation. ([link removed])

** Looking Forward
Add Your Voice to the Missing Middle Conversation
Did you know that AHS has a website solely dedicated to exploring and understanding Missing Middle Housing?

At [link removed] can learn more about what Missing Middle housing really is, hear from neighbors that support inclusive and more financially-attainable housing, and join an online discussion group.

To send us your own letter of Missing Middle Housing support, contact us at [email protected].

** Join an AHS Group
Become a member of the Alliance for Housing Solutions community on the platform to learn, share ideas, and be part of policy discussions. We currently offer the following groups:

** Housing Action Arlington ([link removed])
This coalition of housing and service providers and advocates meets online monthly to share information, plan strategies, and advocate on a range of housing issues in Arlington. Join here ([link removed])

[link removed]

** Missing Middle Network ([link removed])
Join a group of people committed to increasing the diversity of options and price points of housing in Arlington. Join here ([link removed])

[link removed]

** Accessory Dwelling Discussion Group ([link removed])
In this group, homeowners, architects, and realtors ask questions, share best practices, and provide support for those interested in developing accessory dwellings. Join here ([link removed])

[link removed]
Increasing the supply of affordable housing through education, policy, advocacy, and innovation.
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** Link ([link removed])
** Website ([link removed])
** YouTube ([link removed])
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Alliance for Housing Solutions
PO Box 7009
Arlington, VA 22207
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