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In light of a recent article in the Daily Sun, I want to discuss the need for affordable housing for low- and middle-income citizens in Flagstaff. Various programs have aided hundreds of families in obtaining homes and assisting them with the cost of utility bills, mortgages, and rent.

Despite the successes of these programs, many households fall into a dangerous gap. While they struggle to afford high living and housing costs, they still make “too much” to qualify for assistance programs. A total of 60% of renters in Flagstaff are cost-burdened, meaning they pay more than 30% of their income on housing. This is not an equitable system, and residents deserve help even if they exceed income limits.

In order to address this issue, I propose the extension of income limits for affordable housing programs to include middle-income residents. Although the current funding for the HUD is limited, I believe that it is crucial to push for a better system that will assist a larger scope of struggling residents.

Funding should be prioritized for this need, as housing is one of the most basic needs for a person’s safety and well-being. Without a place to call home, residents will not be able to function properly in society and afford other necessities in their lives. The city of Flagstaff needs help with the housing crisis. I urge you to consider the points I have discussed, and I hope that we can work towards a viable solution collectively as a city.

KAITY SCOTT

Flagstaff

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