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AISD takes first step toward affordable housing

Monday, October 31, 2016 by Courtney Griffin

The Austin Independent School District trustees approved a resolution last week that basically states they are interested and willing partners with the city and Travis County in the quest for more affordable housing for municipal workers. The motion was approved at the board’s regular Monday meeting in an 8-0-1 vote, with District 5 Trustee Amber Elenz abstaining. She voiced concern over the lack of information given to the board before the resolution appeared on the ballot. The initiative was initially put forward Oct. 7 at a meeting of the joint committee of AISD trustees, City Council and the Travis County Commissioners Court. AISD board of trustees President Kendall Pace said all entities are concerned about the city’s rising cost of living and the relative stagnation of workers’ wages. According to the resolution, AISD loses an average of 8,000 teachers per year because of affordability issues, and AISD teachers make an average of $48,000 per year. Having approved the resolution to participate, the city, county and AISD will now suggest public lands that could be used for affordable housing to a working group within the joint committee. AISD currently has 10 properties up for sale or lease that could be utilized in addition to other potential properties.

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