Weekly news round-up

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Brylie Oxley/Wikimedia Commons

Nederland gets much-needed affordable housing funding

On. Oct. 10, the Colorado Housing and Finance Authority approved low-income housing tax credit funding for affordable housing in Nederland. The funding will ensure that people who make 30 percent or less of the area’s median income will be able to rent one of 26 units in the new Tungsten Village complex affordably.

Low-income housing tax credits generate funding through a public-private partnership with investors, and are one of the primary tools used to construct affordable housing today, according to information from Boulder County.

Because of the funding, a family of four making $33,000 annually would be able to rent a three-bedroom unit in Tungsten Village for $867, utilities included.

“This will … help ensure that many of the community’s teachers, first responders, café workers, child care providers, and seniors can live in the community in which they work or simply want to remain,” said Frank Alexander, director of Boulder County Department of Housing and Human Services, in a press release.

Nederland is in desperate need of this funding — the County supports “half of the area’s residents with free or low-cost health coverage and one-quarter with food assistance” every year.

“Housing affordability is a significant issue in our community, particularly for teachers, essential service providers and working families,” said Nederland Mayor pro tem Julie Gustafson in a statement. “The Nederland Board of Trustees gave the Town’s approval for this project because we know it is a critical part of housing our community and keeping our town vibrant.”

Boulder County receives federal funding to combat opioid epidemic

The State of Colorado was granted more than $6 million by the U.S. Justice Department to combat the opioid epidemic, with more than $1 million of that money going into Boulder County.

The City of Longmont received almost half a million dollars to support local law enforcement and first responders in a comprehensive opioid abuse site-based program. Boulder County got $861,569 to fund staffing and treatment resources in the jail and implement programs to ease drug users’ re-entry into the community. The County also got $346,512 to facilitate collaborations between criminal justice, mental health and substance abuse programs.

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment received $1 million to “support public safety by information sharing by leveraging information from a variety of public health and safety data sources.”

Boulder Weekly, HuffPost collaborate for affordable housing forum

On Monday, Oct. 15, Boulder affordable housing experts spoke at the Rayback Collective about addressing the city’s increasing housing crisis in a panel co-sponsored by HuffPost and Boulder Weekly.

The forum is part of HuffPost’s Listen to America series, in which journalists from the online news organization travel around the country in an RV, partnering with local news organizations to host community forums on topics of local interest.

At the Boulder event, panelists included Boulder Housing and Human Services Director Kurt Firnhaber, City Council member Jill Grano and PLAN-Boulder member Adam Swetlik. The panel was moderated by HuffPost journalist Michael Hobbes, who has covered affordable housing across the country for the publication.

The two-hour discussion, which included a question-and-answer session, sought to pinpoint just how Boulder became so unaffordable, what common misconceptions of the housing market exist, and potential solutions for the problem.

You can watch a replay of the forum for free at huffingtonpost.com/feature/listen-to-america. 

CU picks firm to find next president

The University of Colorado Board of Regents selected the firm they’ll use to find the system’s next president.

The Board of Regents selected Wheless Partners Consulting, “after a competitive process that drew proposals from leading national firms,” according to a press release from the university.  Three senior partners, including one who is the former president of the University of Alabama, will lead the search and recruitment process.

“Wheless provides coverage across education, government and all industries in order to find a gifted CEO to lead the CU system,” said Sue Sharkey, chair of the CU Board of Regents, in a press release.

CU President Bruce Benson announced this year that he’ll be resigning from his post in July 2019.