In addition to major votes on transportation network companies and lobby reform, City Council greenlighted measures to create and maintain affordable housing for low-income residents on Dec. 17. In a 9-2 vote, Council gave the go-ahead for the establishment of three new homestead preservation districts (HPDs) in East Austin. The specially qualified districts are a step toward reinvesting property tax to promote housing affordability, by either building or rehabilitating affordable housing. With stagnant wages, escalating living costs, and explosive growth, residents facing rising property taxes and the ongoing threat of displacement need the long-awaited plan more than ever, said supporters…

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