New study says Virginia lacks affordable housing

Terry McAuliffe
(AP File Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — Governor Terry McAuliffe announced the release of a new, independent study Friday at the Governor’s Housing Conference in Norfolk.

According to a press release, the report states Virginia has a shortage in affordable housing and needs to produce significant levels of new, affordable housing to accommodate anticipated workforce growth.

McAuliffe announced the study to 800 stakeholders, including housing providers, housing finance representatives, community and economic developers and research institutions during his featured speech at the three-day conference.

“Unfortunately, the private sector faces challenges in producing affordable housing and Virginia can no longer rely on the federal government as a funding partner,” McAuliffe said during the conference, “At the state level, we need to build on the momentum we’ve achieved, including functionally ending veteran homelessness, and think boldly and creatively to address the housing challenges that remain in the Commonwealth.”

McAuliffe signed Executive Order 32, titled “Advancing Virginia’s Housing Policy,” in 2014 to address housing goals for Virginia. The independent research was a product of this Executive Order.

Virginia has increased state support for the Housing Trust Fund and increased the number of permanent supportive housing units, as well as functionally ended veteran homelessness because of Executive Order 32, according to the press release.

Secretary of Commerce and Trade Todd Haymore, Chairman of the Housing Policy Advisory Council, stated in the press release, “This Virginia-based research is designed to be a tool to assist stakeholders and policy makers at the state, regional, and local levels as we strive to build on the successes of the past and move into the future with clear data and facts about the future possibilities for housing in Virginia.”

The complete report, commissioned by the Housing Policy Advisory Council, was written by academic experts from George Mason University, Virginia Commonwealth University, Virginia Tech and the College of William and Mary.

The summary report and nine additional reports are available online at www.vchr.vt.edu/VirginiaHousingEconomicLinkages.