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People walk along Bedford Avenue near the Bedford Hill Apartments in Pittsburgh’s Hill District. City officials are looking to expand Pittsburgh’s affordable housing stock with an affordable housing trust fund. (Photo by Ryan Loew/PublicSource)

Pittsburgh’s path to finalizing an affordable housing policy has been arduous, but these days, there’s high confidence on Grant Street that the city will at least find the money for an affordable housing trust fund by the end of 2017. That gives city officials only two and a half months to sort through this practical and political matter of how to raise $10 million a year.

To do that, here’s what will need to happen:

Members of city council will have to agree on a plan to raise the funds — an amount the city’s Affordable Housing Task Force recommended. The funding could come from raising taxes or redirecting other money from the city budget.

Mayor Bill Peduto will have to sign off on the plan. At this point, he’s voiced support for a tax increase and has said he’ll work with city council on its other ideas.

Once the funding plan is in place, the Urban Redevelopment Authority will take out a bond for tens of millions to immediately start work on affordable housing projects. Council will also set up a board to oversee how the money is spent.

But while those few steps seem straightforward, they belie a tricky political process.



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