Since 1981, Seattle voters have approved one bond and four levies to create affordable housing. Seattle has now funded over 10,000 affordable apartments for seniors, low- and moderate-wage workers, and formerly homeless individuals and families, plus provided down-payment loans to more than 600 first-time homebuyers and rental assistance to more than 4,000 households.
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Have questions or comments about the Seattle Housing Levy? Please send an email to Housing.Levy@seattle.gov.
2009 Seattle Housing Levy
In November 2009, Seattle voters overwhelmingly approved the renewal of the Seattle Housing Levy (see more about the renewal process).
The 2009 Housing Levy has five programs:
- Rental Production & Preservation
- Operating & Maintenance Fund
- Rental Assistance
- Homebuyer Assistance
- Acquisition & Opportunity Loan Fund
See 2009 Housing Levy Fact Sheet for detailed descriptions of programs; see also the annual reports:
Administrative & Financial Plan
Distribution of Housing Levy funds is guided by an Administrative & Financial Plan, reviewed and revised every two years and adopted by City Council. On June 27, 2011, City Council adopted the 2012-2013 A&F Plan, which will be effective Jan. 1, 2012-Dec. 31, 2013.
An update to the plan for 2014-2016 is underway. For more information, or to attend the public stakeholder meetings in 2013, visit the A&F Plan Update page.
With the passage of the levy voters also approved the establishment of an oversight committee, for the purpose of monitoring the progress of levy programs and reporting to the Mayor and City Council on that progress.
The 13 members of the Housing Levy Oversight Committee, all confirmed by City Council, are selected as follows:
- one (1) City employee appointed by the Mayor or his designee
- six (6) non-government employees appointed by the Mayor
- five (5) non-government employees appointed by City Council
The current Housing Levy Oversight Committee members include:
- Josephine Tamayo Murray, Chair, Catholic Community Services of Western Washington
- Ezra Basom, Ezra Basom & Associates
- Hal Ferris, Vice Chair, Spectrum Development Solutions
- Jerry DeGrieck, Office of Mayor McGinn
- Marty Kooistra, Habitat for Humanity of Seattle/South King County
- Nicole Macri, Downtown Emergency Service Center
- Kollin Min, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
- Traci Ratzliff, City Council Central Staff
- Christine Roveda Rush, Wells Fargo Bank
- Steve Walker, Washington State Housing Finance Commission
- Maiko Winkler-Chin, Seattle Chinatown International District Public Development Authority
- Open position
- Open position
2002 Seattle Housing Levy
In 2002, the voters of Seattle passed a seven-year, $86 million property tax levy to provide affordable housing opportunities for low-income Seattle residents. When the the 2002 Housing Levy was wrapped up at the end of 2009, it had met or exceeded all of its goals.
See the Seattle Housing Levy 2009 Report of Accomplishments, as prepared by the Office of Housing and the Housing Levy Oversight Committee and presented to the City Council.