Glendale gets funding boost for affordable housing for veterans

Glendale’s planned affordable housing development that will focus on veterans is getting a funding boost from the county.

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday in gave the project $850,000 in county funds as part of a motion to issue $11 million to eight affordable housing developments across the county.

They gave the recommendation a first reading, and the motion will be voted on at next Tuesday’s meeting.

Veterans Village, located at 327-331 W. Salem St., will include 44 units that give priority to veterans who qualify for low-income housing. Depending on the number of people in the household, future residents in the development must make between $17,730 and $58,680 a year.

Sandy Miller, chairwoman of the Silver Spring, Md.-based Vietnam Veterans of America Homeless Veterans Committee, said although developments like the Veterans Village are popping up in many communities, more needs to be done.

“There’s a housing shortage, number one, and there’s an affordable housing shortage across the country,” Miller said. “It hits everyone.”

Miller said California has the highest number of homeless veterans in the nation because it’s home to many large military bases.

“That’s where people are getting out [of the service] and they’re staying there,” she said.

Will Cipes, representing project developer Thomas Safran & Associates, told the supervisors that with the loss of funding from city redevelopment agencies, county support was more important than ever.

City redevelopment agencies, which used a portion of property tax money to partner with developers to encourage development in blighted areas, were legislated out of business at the start of last year.

Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas said the $11 million the county plans to distribute this year is only the start.

“Los Angeles County has received $76 million in funds from county [redevelopment agencies] meant for affordable housing,” Ridley-Thomas said. “We should use this funding to create an affordable housing trust fund.”

Ridley-Thomas said the Community Development Commission will distribute the approximately $76 million to affordable housing developments over the next five years. Creation of the trust fund will be put up for a vote at the next supervisors’ meeting on Tuesday. .

Miller said housing developments such as Veterans Village are especially important for the new generation of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans who have done multiple tours of duty overseas.

“Many of them were deployed on very short notice. They came home, they got redeployed, they came back, got redeployed, came back, and they lost their housing,” she said.


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