Affordable Housing

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Questions have been raised about Aspen’s affordable housing authority. Aspen Public Radio spoke with legal experts about whether it could be vulnerable to lawsuits. They say probably not, contradicting APCHA’s former director.

Elise Thatcher

Earlier this week Aspen City Council approved paying for a consulting company to gather data, pinpoint the goals of the housing program, and recommend  improvements to the guidelines. The analysis begins next week. One area that will be reviewed closely is the qualification requirements for someone who wants to live in Aspen’s affordable housing program.

  There’s more information now about a recently released document concerning Aspen’s affordable housing program. It’s come to light that the Aspen Pitkin County Housing Authority has lost much of its power to the Aspen City Manager’s office.

Roger Adams

The race for mayor in Aspen has become more heated as election day gets closer. Two people are running for the seat. Ballots will be counted May 5th. Aspen Public Radio’s Marci Krivonen sat down with candidate Torre.

Torre isn’t a newcomer to city politics. He served eight years on council. This is his fifth attempt to become mayor. The tennis instructor has lived in town for two decades and says he’s running because he feels the public’s voice has been lost.

Grassroots TV

The candidates running for Aspen City Council and mayor were grilled Thursday night at the annual Squirm Night forum. Aspen Public Radio’s Marci Krivonen reports.

Affordable housing, development and the residency of one candidate came up during the two hour forum in council chambers. Editors from local newspapers grilled the seven people running for two open seats on council.

One question asked the candidates to grade the City Manager’s Office. Retired affordable housing director Tom McCabe and former mayor Mick Ireland:

Elise Thatcher

Officials say there's nothing illegal going on with how a local affordable housing program is being governed. Aspen Public Radio’s Elise Thatcher was at last night’s Aspen/Pitkin County Housing Authority meeting and has this story, and a full copy of the memo.

Courtesy Aspen Pitkin County Housing Authority

The legal status of Aspen's local housing authority is in question and its board of directors will discuss the problem tonight. Aspen Public Radio’s Carolyn Sackariason reports.

A 2012 memo from a Denver attorney says the Aspen/Pitkin County Housing Authority has been stripped, over time, of its policy-making functions, so that its board doesn’t have the power it’s supposed to have under state laws. Instead, the city manager’s office controls the housing agency.

Facebook/Keith Goode

 

Next week ballots go in the mail for Aspen’s municipal election. Voters will choose from a large pool of candidates to fill two open seats on city council. Keith Goode is one of seven people running. He spoke with Aspen Public Radio’s Marci Krivonen.

"Reporter: Why are you running for city council?"

 

Goode: "I’ve been on the Planning and Zoning Board for the last four years and I really have enjoyed my time there. But, the main reason is when I hear people say ‘Aspen’s losing its character,’ I don’t buy that."

Good afternoon, it’s Mountain Edition.

The top official for the U.S. Department of Veteran’s Affairs visits disabled vets in Snowmass.

The former owner of an embattled dog sledding operation appears in court.

And, it’s fire season in Colorado. Local firefighters are preparing at specific locations.

Potholes are forming on local streets. We’ll tell you why the deep caverns are particularly pronounced in the high country.

State lawmakers spend nine hours debating the budget.

Aspen City Council is considering eliminating a longtime housing option for local workers. Aspen Public Radio’s Carolyn Sackariason reports.

It’s called the “Accessory Dwelling Unit” program and it’s been around for decades. The idea was that wealthy homeowners would offset their development impacts by building a separate dwelling unit from the main house so a local worker could live there. But it’s a voluntary program and many of them remain empty. At Tuesday’s work session, City Councilman Adam Frisch told his colleagues that the program should be eliminated.

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