1. Increase owner-occupied rehabilitation investment in vulnerable neighborhoods. The city is heavily investing in downtown. An equitable investment must be made in strengthening and preserving affected neighborhoods.
2. Establish a city-coordinated homestead exemption enrollment program. Developers are aggressively buying up properties from unaware owners. The city should be leading the charge to educate homeowners about homestead exemptions, tax freezes for those older than 65 and property tax deferrals.
3. Establish a tax abatement program for homeowners. The city creates Tax Reinvestment Zones for businesses, and the same should be done for vulnerable neighborhoods.
4. The city must lead an aggressive land banking initiative to ensure there is property for affordable rentals. The city must also coordinate efforts with all public entities to ensure that land it sells is preserved for affordable housing.
5. Establish a coordinated housing system as recommended by the mayor’s housing task force.
San Antonio Express-News: story here.
A community coalition wants to see more aggressive implementation of policies aimed at preventing housing displacement in San Antonio. During a meeting Monday night among more than 100 members of COPS Metro Alliance and Mayor Ron Nirenberg, he said, “I’m listening to you.”
Under Nirenberg’s leadership, San Antonio has for the first time prioritized housing in the City’s annual budget. The mayor established a task force to recommend affordable housing policy measures that City Council adopted last year, but COPS Metro wants to see stronger action from the mayor and Council to prevent people being priced out of their homes or apartments – not just mitigate such displacement. More.