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Affordable Housing

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NEWS
Joe Piasecki | July 14, 2010
Like a lot of people these days, Josh Ledebur struggles to pay his mortgage. What makes this schoolteacher's story unexpected is that he's participating in a city affordable-housing program. Ledebur is asking the city to change terms of his affordable-housing agreement that make it appear he owes much more on his Burbank home than it's worth and are keeping him from refinancing at a lower interest rate. The city's redevelopment agency is reluctant, however, to make a precedent of changing done deals in response to market trends — though that is one option before the City Council, which doubles as the Redevelopment Agency.
NEWS
By Gretchen Meier, gretchen.meier@latimes.com | May 17, 2011
The City Council has agreed to spend $9.6 million of redevelopment money on an affordable housing project that costs more than the total projected budget deficit for the city. Although the funds now earmarked to demolish and rebuild a number of multifamily housing structures in the 2200 block of North Catalina Street cannot be legally used to fill the budget hole, the spending comes at a time when the future of the Redevelopment Agency — and its funding — remains uncertain. In Gov. Jerry Brown’s revised budget proposal released Monday, redevelopment agencies remain on the chopping block for a potential $1.7 billion in redirected revenues to the state.
THE818NOW
By Kelly Corrigan, kelly.corrigan@latimes.com | June 25, 2012
Stripped of its redevelopment funds and faced with ever dwindling federal grants, Burbank is having to rethink its approach to affordable housing. The city recently reserved roughly $402,000 for future affordable housing projects, bumping its total to $1.2 million - far less than the $8 million or so officials typically had to work with each, said Ruth Davidson-Guerra, assistant community development director. “Never before have we been faced with this kind of challenge,” she said.
NEWS
By Maria Hsin, maria.hsin@latimes.com | October 14, 2011
The need for affordable housing in the city continues to outpace availability, officials say, even with new developments in the pipeline. The Burbank Housing Corp., a nonprofit housing developer created in 1997, provides affordable housing opportunities and has been at the forefront of trying to bridge the gap between demand and supply. “We've seen it increase with people losing their jobs, and a dramatic increase in the last couple of years,” Executive Director Judith Arandes said.
NEWS
July 24, 2002
Laura Sturza New building facades, open space, an activity center and landscaping will replace dilapidated apartments by 2004 in an area of Burbank targeted for redevelopment. The purchase and renovation of apartments at the 1800 block of Grismer Avenue and the 1700 block of Elliott Drive received City Council approval July 16. While 29 apartments will be available for low- and very low-income residents at reduced fees, another 31 will be for moderate-income households at market rates.
NEWS
January 4, 2003
Laura Sturza While Burbank is already "the envy of cities nationwide," Brian Malone hopes to keep the city in top form -- though if elected as a councilman, he would face potential state budget cuts. "We don't know what those state challenges are yet," Malone said. The City Council hopeful will run against nine other candidates in the Feb. 25 primary for one of two vacant council seats. By being "meticulous in analyzing issues," open-minded, and interested in listening to residents' concerns, Malone believes he would add to the work of a council already tackling issues that are high on his priority list -- including downtown revitalization and affordable housing.
NEWS
By Alison Tully | August 16, 2008
BURBANK — A former construction manager of a nearly $16-million affordable housing project filed a formal complaint against the city Housing Corporation’s executive director for ending the contract prematurely. In a nearly 15-page letter addressed to City Councilman David Gordon on Aug. 7, the former manager, James Vodery, states that the termination of his contract was “unjustified” and that Judith Arandes, the Burbank Housing Corporation’s executive director, mismanaged the project.
NEWS
February 22, 2003
Laura Sturza Affordable housing is moving up on the city's list of priorities, and the City Council wants to make residents more receptive to having such housing in their neighborhoods. "Affordable housing is a dirty word," Vice Mayor Stacey Murphy said. "When you say to somebody 'We want to do affordable housing,' the nimby-ism comes out first and they say 'Well, that's great, let me tell you what part of town I'd like it in.'" The City Council approved recommendations from its Blue Ribbon Task Force on Affordable Housing at the council meeting Tuesday.
NEWS
August 17, 2002
On Page A3 in the Wednesday, July 24 edition of the Leader, there is an excellent article regarding affordable housing in Burbank. I would suggest Jesse Byers read it. The city will have 29 renovated apartments available for low-and very low-income residents. Another 31 will be for moderate-income residents. This is an ongoing program. The rehabbed apartments will be located in an area targeted for redevelopment. Current residents will get preference.
ARTICLES BY DATE
THE818NOW
By Alene Tchekmedyian, alene.tchekmedyian@latimes.com | August 20, 2013
Soon after Douglas Villalta found out he'd snagged an apartment in Burbank's new affordable housing project , he bought a set of woven straw place mats. His family of four, with its newest addition just 8 months old, would finally have the space to sit down every night for a proper family dinner. For years, Villalta took his plate to the living room at dinner time, while his wife, Evelyn, ate in their tiny kitchen, and his daughter, Genesis, now 12, ate while watching cartoons in the one bedroom they all shared.
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THE818NOW
By Kelly Corrigan, kelly.corrigan@latimes.com | June 25, 2012
Stripped of its redevelopment funds and faced with ever dwindling federal grants, Burbank is having to rethink its approach to affordable housing. The city recently reserved roughly $402,000 for future affordable housing projects, bumping its total to $1.2 million - far less than the $8 million or so officials typically had to work with each, said Ruth Davidson-Guerra, assistant community development director. “Never before have we been faced with this kind of challenge,” she said.
NEWS
June 19, 2012
State officials are correct in saying that local redevelopment agencies “sapped money from schools in the name of economic development that rarely materialized in any justifiable way” (“City knocks state payout,” June 17). Earlier this year, Assemblyman Mike Gatto (D-Silver Lake) was also correct when he said that redevelopment agencies “have become government subsidies for developers” (“The clock winds down,” Jan. 15). When California's redevelopment agencies began, their purpose - to provide affordable housing and eradicate blighted areas - was a noble endeavor.
NEWS
By Maria Hsin, maria.hsin@latimes.com | October 14, 2011
The need for affordable housing in the city continues to outpace availability, officials say, even with new developments in the pipeline. The Burbank Housing Corp., a nonprofit housing developer created in 1997, provides affordable housing opportunities and has been at the forefront of trying to bridge the gap between demand and supply. “We've seen it increase with people losing their jobs, and a dramatic increase in the last couple of years,” Executive Director Judith Arandes said.
NEWS
By Maria Hsin, maria.hsin@latimes.com | October 7, 2011
Officials this week broke ground on a new affordable housing development that will feature 20 one- and two-bedroom apartments. The Catalina Development will be the first all-new residential project for the nonprofit Burbank Housing Corp. The nonprofit typically rehabs existing buildings to use for low-income housing, but the property on the 2200 block of Catalina Avenue was “so substandard and severely blighted” that nothing could be salvaged, Burbank Housing Corp Executive Director Judith Arandes said.
NEWS
By Gretchen Meier, gretchen.meier@latimes.com | May 17, 2011
The City Council has agreed to spend $9.6 million of redevelopment money on an affordable housing project that costs more than the total projected budget deficit for the city. Although the funds now earmarked to demolish and rebuild a number of multifamily housing structures in the 2200 block of North Catalina Street cannot be legally used to fill the budget hole, the spending comes at a time when the future of the Redevelopment Agency — and its funding — remains uncertain. In Gov. Jerry Brown’s revised budget proposal released Monday, redevelopment agencies remain on the chopping block for a potential $1.7 billion in redirected revenues to the state.
NEWS
By Dan Evans | January 1, 2011
The newspaper business — not to mention the news itself in this town — moves incredibly fast, so much so that I occasionally feel the need to hire chiropractors to treat the whiplash for my long-suffering staff. The paper moved forward significantly in 2010, both in print and online, and I am very proud of the work we have done. Last January, we launched our staff blog, The818Now.com, an experiment that continues to impress me with its reach. We launched a redesign of our websites in May, changed to a new design system in June, and added a fourth paper, Brand X, to our portfolio in August.
NEWS
By Bill Kisliuk, bill.kisliuk@latimes.com | December 15, 2010
The city has agreed to acquire and rehabilitate a seven-unit apartment building on Catalina Street, and temporarily removing tenants while it does the work. The City Council, acting as the Redevelopment Agency, approved the deal Tuesday after a general discussion of affordable housing strategies and finances. The city paid $900,000 for the property and plans to spend more than $800,000 to fix up the building and pay relocation costs for the existing tenants. The work includes extensive repairs to the building's drainage system, installing energy-efficient kitchen and bathroom appliances, adding improved heating and air conditioning units and restoring an illegally converted studio so it again is part of a legal one-bedroom apartment.
NEWS
By Gretchen Meier, gretchen.meier@latimes.com | October 23, 2010
After federal housing authorities last year forced Burbank to designate specific personnel to oversee grant funding for social services and other programs, city officials say a recent internal audit shows they are on track to meet goals head on. In order to continue to receive Community Development Block Grants and other funding, the city must submit an annual evaluation report to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. The report outlines the steps Burbank has taken to address the primary concerns of Burbank residents, such as new affordable housing, crime awareness, health services and job creation.
NEWS
By Gretchen Meier, gretchen.meier@latimes.com | September 21, 2010
Struggling families have more housing options after city officials this week reserved 38 more apartments for low-income residents. The City Council, acting in its dual role as a Redevelopment Agency, voted to increase the number of units available to low-income families. More than 200 families are on the waiting list for housing assistance, officials said. The Burbank Housing Corporation operates 275 affordable housing units in five neighborhoods in addition to a transitional housing program.
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