- Rhode Island’s new housing development rate has ranked dead last in the nation in recent years.
- Half of renters cannot afford an average-priced two-bedroom apartment in any city or town in our state.
- The state will need at least 3,500 new housing units each year through 2025.
- Only 1 in 4 households that need and qualify for affordable housing can find it.
It’s why we encouraged everyone to support our families, workforce, seniors, and veterans by passing the Question 7 bond referendum on yesterday’s ballot. We wanted to bring the dream of a safe and affordable place to call home to more Rhode Islanders.
The $50 million Housing Opportunity Bond was designed to tackle Rhode Island’s lack of available affordable homes and apartments. The money will help produce 800 housing units and would help address urban blight — renovating residential and commercial properties as well as public and community spaces. It would also create 1,700 good paying jobs for Rhode Island building and construction workers.
And yesterday, we finally heard from you – the voters. Question 7 was approved, winning 57 percent of the vote.
Thank you to all who helped move forward the bond – and the conversation – for affordable housing. But the work is not done – and the conversation has just begun. When a family spends 30-50% of their income on housing, as a large percentage of our neighbors do, they cannot contribute to the local economy or save for the future.
We can do better, if we work together to create more solutions that put families in homes they can reasonably afford. Join us in the work and the conversations ahead.
President & CEO,
United Way of Rhode Island