Housing Virginia E-News
September, 2010

Letter from Connie Chamberlin,

Housing Opportunities Made Equal, Inc.

Dear Housing Friends,

If you are reading this, you already believe that housing is one of the most critical elements in the life of a family, as well as an essential economic engine for the community. And you are probably fully aware of the challenges we all face in making affordable housing in neighborhoods of opportunity available to
all Virginians.
That's why it's so important that we work as effectively as possible - and working effectively means working together.  HOME was a founding member of Housing Virginia because we believe that bringing together the wide range of interests that make up Housing Virginia - builders and developers, non-profits, government, advocates, lenders, and the real estate industry - creates a unique ability to address the barriers to housing faced by so many Virginia families.
A central part of the mission of Housing Virginia is to overcome community resistance to affordable housing. Sometimes just talking together helps generate ideas and possible solutions, but Housing Virginia has gone beyond discussion to find new ways to encourage regional collaboration and to provide the facts that will help affordable housing advocates make their case.

Housing Virginia has also taken the lead in an effort to bring Virginia's statewide housing organizations together to foster increased collaboration and new ways of working together. This year, for the first time, those organizations, like HOME, that advocate for policy change at the General Assembly, jointly sponsored meetings of stakeholders throughout the state. We are evaluating what each of us does, what we do best - and what we might actually let someone else do. Everything is on the table. It's a radical way of thinking, but it's the only way in which we will all accomplish our goals.


Submit Your "Connecting Your Message" Award Entry by October 15th
Virginia's affordable housing organizations are invited to show off their creative side by participating in the "Connecting Your Message" Awards.

Visit  the Housing Virginia Website before October 15th for more information on submissions. Sponsored by Housing Virginia and Metropolitan Regional Information Systems (MRIS), the "Connecting Your Message" Awards will spotlight the effective use of traditional and emerging forms of communication to deliver the housing affordability message. 

$1000 awards will be made in each of the following categories:
  • Free Media:  entries might include stories appearing in print media, op-ed pieces, and TV or radio coverage
  • Paid Media:  entries might include print, broadcast, outdoor,  internet and other types of advertising, as well as creative promotional materials
  • Social Media:  entries might include innovative website enhancements and the creative use of networking sites like Twitter and Facebook.


GHC Features Housing Affordability Index (HAI) Sourcebook Session

VB Roundtable Previews HAI

Just how affordable is housing in Virginia? How has affordability changed over time? How does affordability vary from locality to locality? With a significant drop in housing prices over the last couple of years, has housing become more affordable or has the loss of jobs and income kept housing unaffordable for most families?
The soon-to-be-launched Housing Affordability Index (HAI) Sourcebook by Housing Virginia helps to answer these questions and will be the topic of discussion during a breakout session at the Governor's Housing Conference, Thursday afternoon, November 18th. 

Through the assistance of the Virginia Center for Housing Research at Virginia Tech, this new analysis tool (HAI) compares household income to housing costs along with providing a variety of other current housing affordability data. This wealth of housing data on affordability will soon be available on the Housing Virginia website and will shed light on the dynamics of affordability across the Commonwealth.

Regional Housing and Transportation Forums Launched

Housing Virginia announces the first in a series of regional dialogues about the relationship between housing and transportation.  The first session will be held in Roanoke on November 4th from 8 to 11:30 am in partnership with the Roanoke Regional Housing Network.  The session will feature a presentation by Trip Pollard, Senior Attorney with the Southern Environmental Law Center and a national expert on transportation and land use. 
These sessions are intended to foster local dialogue that will lead to informed policy debate and development.  Mr. Pollard's presentation will be followed by responses from community leaders from the public and private sectors and a facilitated conversation with the audience.   Mr. Pollard will be presenting a Policymakers Guide to Housing and Transportation: Connecting Home and Work.  This report will be the first in a series of policy guides on housing issues that will be the focus of future community dialogues.
The next session will be held in Hampton Roads on January 12th with others to follow in Northern Virginia, Charlottesville and the Northern Shenandoah Valley.  Housing Virginia will record the proceedings from each regional dialogue and publish the summary on its website.

In This Issue
Submit Your "Connecting Your Message" Award Entries by October 15th
Governor's Housing Conference Features Housing Affordability Index (HAI) Sourcebook Session
Regional Housing and Transportation Forums Launched

Give to Housing Virginia
Your generous gift helps Housing Virginia to make the case for increasing the supply of affordable housing options across the Commonwealth.

Your tax-deductible donation may be sent to:
Housing Virginia
P. O. Box 4658
Richmond, VA   23220

Or you can make a secure online donation here.

Housing Virginia also participates in the Commonwealth of Virginia Campaign.  Please use CVC code # 3690.

Summit of Family and Youth Homelessness - October 21st, 2010

The Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond's Forum on Community Land Trusts: A Shared Equity Model - October 26th, 2010

LISC's 20th Anniversary Celebration in Richmond - November 4th, 2010

Governor's Housing Conference - November 17th-19th, 2010

VAHCDO Legal Seminar - December 2nd-3rd, 2010

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