By Jerod MacDonald-Evoy | Arizona Mirror
Affordable housing is becoming a bigger and bigger issue to residents and politicians alike in Arizona but conflicts between state law and what local municipalities want to do is a major hurdle for increasing Arizona’s dwindling affordable housing stock, according to city officials like Tempe Vice-Mayor Lauren Kuby.
During fiscal year 2018, the Arizona Department of Housing spent $68 million in rental subsidies for low income Arizonans and invested $46 million towards aiding the homeless. However, since 2011 homelessness has seen a nearly 50 percent increase, and Arizona ranks just about in the middle of the country when it comes to affordable housing.
Renters occupy 573,000 units in Maricopa County, and more than 214,000 or 39 percent, pay more than 35 percent of their income on rent, according to U.S. Census data.