Affordable housing at the forefront of Williamson County public hearing scheduled for late February

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Williamson County residents concerned with rising housing costs will have a chance to make their voices heard later this month at a public hearing held during a Commissioners Court meeting.

Williamson County commissioners voted Tuesday to hold a public hearing regarding the need for a regional housing authority to provide affording living options for residents. The public hearing for the proposal is set for 10 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 27 at the Williamson County Courthouse.

According to the Census Bureau’s 2017 American Community Survey, the median household income in Williamson County is $75,935, and the median home value in the area is $209,400.

Housing authorities provide rental housing below average rental rates for eligible low-income families, the elderly or people with disabilities. Williamson County was approached by Texas Housing Foundation, a housing authority out of Marble Falls that already operates properties in Georgetown, Round Rock and Liberty Hill.

“The needs here are great,” THF CEO Mark Mayfield said. “The price of housing is just going through the roof, but the wages aren’t.”

Creating a formal partnership with the county will streamline the process, he said, and allow the housing authority to expand their ability to provide affordable options for Williamson County residents. THF is not government-funded and is a public body involved in residential real estate to meet the needs of the workforce, he said.

“Most of the people we house are people who work in the retail establishments and work in restaurants or work in schools,” Mayfield said. “They’re necessary, vibrant parts of the community, but they can’t buy the [expensive]homes.”

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  1. Annie and Jim Cavanagh

    Hi, I am Annie , My husband , a Military Vet and I moved here to Texas because we saw that it was much less to live here than in IL…We read the information on the internet which when we relocated here both without jobs or a place to live found out while we were staying with our new pastor out here that the information on the internet was about 4 years old and it was much cheaper to live here back then. Well we had fallen on some hard times and practically lost our home in Aurora IL , well to be honest we sold it but we had to pay 2000.00 to get out of our loan. The house was 16 years old and should have been worth well over 200,000 by the time we sold it but the housing market fell and the house was sold for less than the base price of the house when it was new 17 years ago… Very sad that we lost all that money and had to pay to get rid of it. Anyway when we got here the only apartment we could afford that was available here in Georgetown was on Katy Ln. Needless to say the apartment building is horrible and the neighborhood is very questionable. The landlord does not like to fix things and the it is just not a nice place for the money that he wants for our rent. It was just as much as we were paying in IL for our house plus the assessment. My house payment was 669.73 and our assessment was 191.00. We pay 850.00 for what I would consider a slum apartment . We moved here thinking it was way cheaper to live here and we got a rude awakening… We have been here almost a year at this address and the first week we lived here we were ready to move. Currently we are strapped and would love to move to a nicer house to rent or a double wide or even a better apartment but do not have the funds that it would take to come up with the expensive prices to rent any of these places to live here . We are good people and my husband fought for this country and was in the military for 21 yrs. I think he deserves better than this… We would love to move but stay here in Georgetown as we fell in love with this town and want to retire here. My husband works in Austin and I work here in Georgetown , we want to stay but not living in the nasty place we live in for the price we have to pay and the things we have to put up with living on this street . Can someone help? Thank you for hearing me… Have a great day and God Bless, Mrs. Annie Cavanagh

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Carlie Porterfield
A San Marcos native and third-generation journalist, Carlie Porterfield joined Community Impact as a reporter in May 2016 after graduating from Texas State University with a journalism degree. After covering political, business and school district news in Buda and Kyle for over a year, she made the transition to the Georgetown editorial team, where she is responsible for Williamson County coverage. Before her time with Community Impact, Porterfield had bylines in the Austin American-Statesman, the San Marcos Record and Texas State's student paper, the University Star.
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