– So one of the issues our elected officials are talking about, and people really across the entire state, and this is one that
impacts the whole state, is affordable housing. I know all of you have
been looking at this issue and are giving some good policy advice. Maura, please frame this for us. What kind of deal is this
really for the state? How is it impacting us? – This is critical. I mean, this is going to
really set a generation or two up for success or failure, and what’s great about Utah is we’re on a high trajectory for growth, we have a healthy economy, we have comparison models around us, in Colorado and Arizona, about what good growth
is and what housing is. This issue is fascinating. I’m really pleased the
legislature’s dealing with it because a lot of the solutions are gonna come from local jurisdictions, so there’s respect between the
municipality and the state. Government needs to really
exist as talk about discussions, and it’s really going to challenge our not in our backyard,
it’s going to challenge what affordable housing
is and affording housing as opposed to low income
housing, we’re going to all have to pay more attention
to the words we use, and we’re going to have
to start looking at what I believe are healthy economies
or diverse economies, and you have different
kinds of homes and different kinds of families and different
kinds of socioeconomic conditions that exist, but
those can become challenging to have a practical discussion about. – For sure. Frank says right, every
single time you start talking about affordable housing,
this is the issue. I love it, but I want it somewhere else. – Oh, that’s why I laughed
because the part with not my backyard, the politics
of this is fascinating, because we saw playouts
of these local initiatives like when the Kenwood Mall project. So you have developers-
– That wasn’t even affordable housing. – Well yeah, they had mixed housing but– – Very little affordable. – But it was dense, it
was viewed as being dense, so you had this grassroots against this. The politics is fascinating
because you have home builders, they’re in the legislature,
that are frustrated by what they see with the cities
pushing back to say this coalition of home builders,
environmentalists, kinda the urban planners
like Maura and others, and the media saying we
need more denser housing in the business community. But then you have residents
and their cities saying no we’re worried about traffic,
both sides are right, it makes for fascinating
politics because it’s realigned with your usual political
alignments have been. So that will be played out
this next session, probably the next couple of sessions. Because everyone is right,
and a lot of people say I don’t wanna live next door
to 1200 units or whatever. So you’re gonna see the
legislature grapple with that. – And Frank pointed it
out well, the markers that we’re looking to now, we
gotta bust that apart, that affordable housing does not
just mean dense boxed housing. The other voice that’s great
in this, there are two voices that I hope converge and are
really loud, and one of them, and they’re after the same things. One of them is millennials
who say I have a different relationship to my home, I
have a different relationship to my lawn, I have a different
relationship to where I’m gonna spend my money. So they’re looking at
affordable housing being they have incomes, but
they want them in certain neighborhoods and some of
the neighborhoods have a quarter acre and Kentucky
Bluegrass right now. So some of it is a socioeconomic argument, some of it is an urbanization
and lifestyle change and the other, I said two
groups, one are the millennials. The other group that is
having this same relationship with their home are
retiring people who say, wow, I grew up in Sandy, I love Sandy. But I want to sell my five
room house and I want to move into something else,
and that’s showing up at the city council as a density project. So there’s some voices to bring in. – I wanna change it a little
bit, instead of saying affordable housing, housing
affordability which is becoming a larger issue I
believe because businesses here, there are thousands, thousands
of jobs that are going unfilled right now because
we don’t have enough people. Well these businesses
want people but they need to be able to come here and
afford the houses that the salaries pay for. And if you’re a young person,
right now buying a home may not be your best alternative,
but renting is a little cheaper now. However rent is still pretty
high, and if you don’t make a certain level
of income, it makes it particularly difficult for
you if you have a family. So some way, somehow,
and the Salt Lake chamber is leading out on this, putting together a housing gap coalition to figure out a way to make it so that families
of all stripes and all socioeconomic strider,
can afford a decent place to live and where they’ll
feel safe and have the amenities they need
to have a quality of life. – And our culture will
be really impacted for the negative if we create
invisible fences and only have like people living in
places, that really does lose the texture of
America and the greatness of America, so I think
this notion of diversity of place really speaks to something that’s quintessentially American
and I hope we can move towards that. – That’s a great point. We’re gonna watch this one
closely in this session, you’ve identified the
exact points we should be looking at as our legislatures
discuss, thank you.