Housing Crisis

The Puget Sound area has been in the middle of a disastrous housing crisis for many years. The Puget Sound Region Council says that as of 2022 we currently have a deficit of 50,000 housing units and are on track to hit 800,000 by 2040. The reason is simple, cities and counties have policies of denying construction permits for necessary housing.

The forced scarcity created by local governments creates shortages and force renters and buyers into bidding wars not only driving the price of rent up 70% from 2007 to 2019, but also property values and their local property tax rates. This negatively effects people at all income levels, with lower income levels pushed into poverty or homelessness. When 300 people compete for 200 homes, they get into a bidding war and the price goes up. The only winners are giant investment corporations who buy and sit on property and the governments who watch the property tax assessements go up every year.

My Democrat opponents like to say we have homeless people because some people aren’t taxed enough, aren’t “paying their fair share”. This is nonsense. People are homeless because they don't have homes. While people become homeless for many reasons, they become trapped in prolonged homelessnes because housing is too expensive and there aren’t enough homes for everybody. No amount of taxation and subsidy will fix that. My city of Everett publishes that since 2013 it has knowingly been underdeveloping the city by hundreds and thousands of housing units every year. This is why we have families living in cars, people living in our parks, by the road in tents or just stoned out in public. While subsidizing transitional housing and other Democratic proposals would help somebody, they are doomed to failure so long as we don't have enough housing stock available to transition people into.

If elected I will introduce a bill to establish a waiver of Washington State taxes on construction materials and on affordable and highly affordable housing. I will also work to introduce bills restricting the Jim Crow era zoning regulations that see Urban cities like Seattle zoned 80% single family housing only.

We can’t tax our way out of a housing crisis, the only way out of a housing crisis is to build out of it.