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King County Executive
Dow Constantine


Executive takes action to confront homelessness, expand access to affordable housing

Summary

King County will increase homeless shelter capacity in South and East King County following today's announcement by Executive Dow Constantine. The actions will create an additional 237 units of affordable housing and provide services that help people succeed once they find a home. This builds on the work he's already done since declaring a state of emergency in November, including tripling the shelter capacity at county-owned buildings in downtown Seattle.

Story

Executive announces actions to confront homelessness

Executive Constantine and partners announce a series of actions to confront and prevent homelessness in the region outside Kirkland Avenue Townhomes in Renton.

King County Executive Dow Constantine announced a series of actions to confront homelessness and create additional affordable housing, building on the work he's already done since declaring a state of emergency in November.

The Executive's latest actions will increase shelter capacity in South and East King County, create an additional 237 units of affordable housing, and provide rental assistance to those who used to be homeless, military veterans, immigrants and refugees, and families fleeing domestic violence.

It also includes $10 million to connect people to services that help them succeed once they find a home.

"We continue to take action to help those who are homeless today, and prevent children and families from falling into homelessness tomorrow," said Executive Constantine. "This humanitarian crisis requires a comprehensive, prevention-oriented approach that crosses all levels of government working with community partners. We're delivering results at the local level—now we need our Legislature and Congress to join us."

The Executive's actions include:

  • $280,000 in emergency funding to expand shelter capacity and access in South and East King County and create a day center in South King County.
  • $7 million for capital projects that will create an additional 237 units of affordable housing, including units reserved for military veterans and formerly homeless residents.
  • $10 million in rental assistance, funds to operate affordable housing so that it is a positive asset in the community, and funds for support services to help families and individuals remain stably housed through case management, help finding employment, education, and other services.

In December, Executive Constantine, with support from the Metropolitan King County Council, tripled the number of homeless shelter beds inside two county-owned buildings located in downtown Seattle. The additional bed space and extended hours and days at existing shelters announced today will be located in South and East King County.

"Today's action will help to ensure affordable housing in south King County, and it marks another important step towards the revitalization of the Sunset area here in the City of Renton," said King County Council Vice Chair Reagan Dunn, who represents part of Renton. "I want to thank Dow Constantine for taking a leadership role in working to fight homelessness and look forward to working with the Executive and my colleagues on the King County Council to make sure affordable housing is available across the county."

The additional shelter capacity and services include:

  • A new day center in Federal Way for homeless men and women that will refer residents to overnight shelter, meals, hygiene, mail and referrals to services for mental illness and chemical dependency.
  • Keeping an Eastside women's winter shelter open for additional two months this year.
  • Additional beds for homeless youth and young adults at an overnight shelter on the Eastside.
  • A day center and drop-in facility for homeless youth and young adults in Auburn will now be open during weekends.

The capital projects will create multi-family housing for lower-income residents, seniors, and homeless youth. The largest project will be 91 new units for lower-income seniors in Kirkland. It will also create 50 new units for families in Renton and will provide $210,000 for down payment assistance.

There are multiple funding sources:

  • The capital projects will be paid for with federal funds, fees collected when the county documents real-estate transactions, and the Veterans and Human Services levy.
  • Most of the funding for services will come from revenue generated by document reporting fees, the Veterans and Human Services levy, and the Mental Illness and Drug Dependency fund, or MIDD. The awards include 90 Section 8 housing vouchers: 10 project-based vouches from the King County Housing Authority and 80 project-based vouchers from the Seattle Housing Authority.
  • The funds to expand shelter capacity in East and South King County will mostly come from fees collected when the county documents real-estate transactions.

In his role as Chair of the Sound Transit Board, Executive Constantine will include funding for affordable housing in the Sound Transit 3 initiative he proposed for the November ballot. That would build upon the actions he's already taken to create affordable workforce housing based around transit centers.

This spring, Executive Constantine will deliver to the County Council a plan to implement a program to prevent children and family homelessness. It will be the first program to be funded by the Executive's Best Starts for Kids initiative, a levy that voters approved in November.

King County Shelter Supplemental Awards

SOUTH KING COUNTY  
Agency Program  Funding
Catholic Community Services  Federal Way Day Center $40,000
Catholic Community Services Kent Community Engagement Center $10,000
Auburn Youth Resources Arcadia Youth Center $40,000
REACH Permanent Family and Women Shelter $50,000

 
EAST KING COUNTY  
Agency Program Funding
Catholic Community Services Eastside Women's Winter Shelter $50,000
Congregations for the Homeless Eastside Men's Winter Shelter and Snoqualmie Valley Winter Shelter $50,000
Friends of Youth The Landing $40,000
     
TOTAL    $280,000

King County Capital Project Awards

KING COUNTY    
Sponsor Project No. of Units  Funding
Auburn Youth Services Arcadia Auburn 27 $999,500
Bellwether Housing University District Apartments 53 $400,000
Habitat for Humanity Sammamish Cottage Demonstration 10 $350,000
Homesight Greenbridge Homeownership Phase III 6 $210,000
Parkview Services Parkview Homes XII 6 beds $401,000
Red Vines (Imagine Housing)
Totem Lake Phase II - Senior TL II 91 $2,775,000
Renton Housing Authority Sunset Court 50 $1,800,000
       
TOTAL   237 $6,935,500

Operating Support, Rental Assistance, and Supportive Services (ORS) Awards

SEATTLE    
Agency Program  No. of Housing Vouchers Funding
Asian Counseling and Referral Services (ACRS) Housing Opportunities to Encourage Self-Sufficiency (HOPES)   $149,662
Downtown Emergency Service Center (DESC) Kerner-Scott House Clean and Sober   $79,731
Downtown Emergency Service Center (DESC) 1811 Eastlake Supportive Housing   $50,000
Evergreen Treatment Services Respite Case Management Program (REACH)   $148,010
Harborview Medical Center Harborview Mental Health Services   $35,200
Low Income Housing Institute (LIHI) University Commons
25 SHA vouchers  $120,000
Plymouth Housing Group (PHG) Housing Options Program   $165,948
Plymouth Housing Group (PHG) Sylvia's Place 55 SHA vouchers  $0
Sound Mental Health Gossett Place   $177,761
Transitional Resources Avalon Place   $37,366
       
NORTH/EAST KING COUNTY
   
Agency
Program
  Funding
Congregations for the Homeless Permanent Housing with Services   $449,587
The Sophia Way Sophia's Home   $65,898
YWCA of Seattle, King and Snohomish County Family Village Redmond 10 KCHA vouchers  $0

     
SOUTH KING COUNTY
     
Agency
Program   Funding
Muslim Housing Services Homeless Families and Youth   $168,960
Renton Housing Authority (RHA) The Cedars Project   $30,958
Somali Youth & Family Club Homeless Housing Support Services   $120,000
YMCA of Greater Seattle Home at Last   $256,398
       
TOTAL     $10.1 million

Relevant links


Quotes

We continue to take action at the local level to confront this accelerating humanitarian crisis and call upon our Legislature and Congress to do the same. Our comprehensive approach includes emergency shelter for those who are homeless now and provides the affordable housing and services that prevent children and families from falling into homelessness.

Dow Constantine, King County Executive

This funding, and the housing and programs it will provide, is a tangible and needed response to the current crisis. Getting people off the streets and into stable living situations is a vital step toward solving the persistent issue of homelessness.

Joe McDermott, King County Council Chair

Today's action will help to ensure affordable housing in south King County, and it marks another important step towards the revitalization of the Sunset area here in the City of Renton. I want to thank Dow Constantine for taking a leadership role in working to fight homelessness and look forward to working with the Executive and my colleagues on the King County Council to make sure affordable housing is available across the county.

Reagan Dunn, King County Council Vice Chair

Homelessness is a crisis all over the county, including in east King County. Eastside cities have stepped up to fund additional near-term shelter beds to address the immediate needs of our residents. The County funding announced today will contribute to expanding shelter services and adding more affordable housing units for vulnerable seniors. But this is just the beginning. We need a coordinated regional strategy to address the full spectrum of housing needs in King County. I look forward to joining with the Executive and my fellow Councilmembers in find ways to address the long-term challenges of housing in our communities.

Claudia Balducci, King County Councilmember

Providing access to shelter, affordable housing, and health care resources are critical means for survival for many of the most vulnerable in our community. I am pleased to join the Executive in announcing these actions and look forward to continuing work with the community and my colleagues on these issues to ensure all of our citizens have the opportunity to thrive as well as survive.

Jeanne Kohl-Welles, King County Councilmember, Chair of the Health, Housing and Human Services Committee

Our vision for a renewed Sunset neighborhood is becoming a reality and this grant from King County helps create 50 units of housing for low-income families at Sunset Court. The Sunset Area plan shows that through partnerships we can create a beautiful, livable neighborhood that includes quality and affordable housing.

Denis Law, Renton Mayor

For more information, contact:

Chad Lewis, Executive Office, 206-263-1250
David Shurtleff, King County Council, 206-477-2181


King County Executive
Dow Constantine
Dow constantine portrait

Read the Executive's biography