U.S. Supreme Court moves the goalposts on property takings, and there may be local repercussions for renters and landlords

This morning the U.S. Supreme Court issued a ruling on a case involving a California regulation that granted union representatives access to private employers’ work sites for up to 3 hours a day, 120 days per year, in order to recruit and organize. The Court ruled that the government-granted access is a “taking” of property, and thus was subject to the Takings Clause of the U.S. Constitution. In clarifying the rules around a grey area of property rights jurisprudence — and arguably moving the goalposts in favor of property owners — the Court may have also shifted the balance of …

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City rolls out $30 million “strategic investment fund” RFP for anti-displacement efforts

It’s been a big week for investments in Seattle’s BIPOC communities. First, the City Council approved $1 million to allow the Office for Civil Rights to move the $30 million participatory budgeting program forward; then yesterday the Mayor’s Equitable Communities Initiative Task Force unveiled their recommendations for how to invest another $30 million. Now this morning, Mayor Durkan announced the release of an RFP for proposals for land and property acquisition “to respond to disproportionate displacement pressures impacting black, Indigenous, and people of color communities.”

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Is the MHA program working?

Earlier this month, the City of Seattle’s Office of Housing issued its annual report on the MHA program, which requires developers to contribute to the city’s efforts to build more affordable housing. Now that the program has been running for a few years, it’s an apt time to look at how it’s doing.

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