Home Local News Governor signs Rep. Hemmer, Sen. Oliver initiative to address affordable housing needs

Governor signs Rep. Hemmer, Sen. Oliver initiative to address affordable housing needs

by PRIDE Newsdesk
Rep. Caleb Hemmer and Sen. Charlane Oliver

Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee has signed into law a bill by state Rep. Caleb Hemmer and Sen. Charlane Oliver that takes an innovative approach to tackling the growing housing challenges here in Nashville and the rest of the state.

The Nashville Democrats passed HB1229/SB1137 during this year’s legislative session. The legislation is modeled after public-private partnerships that have worked in Charlotte, N.C. and featured in the You Might be Right podcast co-hosted by former Tennessee Governors Phil Bredesen and Bill Haslam.

The new law allows the creation of advanced affordable housing options for Tennesseans by enabling local governments in communities around the state to issue bonds through Industrial Development Boards. The funds can then be used in partnership with the private sector to create and sustain affordable and workforce housing projects.

“This bill provides another ‘tool in the toolbox’ for local governments to use as they see fit,” said Rep. Hemmer. “What works for one community may not work for another, and this legislation offers local governing bodies the flexibility to address their unique housing challenges. By leveraging this approach, we can create new opportunities for public-private partnerships to meet the needs of our neighborhoods.”

“Residents of Nashville have given us a clear mandate: Every Tennessee family deserves access to safe, affordable housing,” said Sen. Oliver. “This legislation makes progress against our affordability crisis by giving local governments a new and effective tool to build more family housing in our communities.”

Rep. Hemmer and Sen. Oliver say the bill also includes safeguards to help protect municipalities, especially smaller cities, who want to engage in providing affordable housing for their residents.

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