Comments on Teton County – Town of Jackson Housing Supply Plan 2017-2021

It is inappropriate to use public money to subsidize the housing for private sector employees. Housing subsidies are appropriate for people who are disabled, and if necessary for public employees: first responders, nurses, teachers, etc. To the extent that the affordable housing supply program is subsidized with taxpayer funds it’s really an “affordable employee program” that benefits the employer class, and the wealthy class who have an interest in cheap labor. Housing subsidies for private sector workers are really wage subsidies for their employers. It’s wrong for private entities to ask the taxpayers to subsidies their employees.

All 2,400 units that are allocated to increase the density of Town should be deed restricted for local workforce occupancy. Every single one. Letting any of these units enter the market without deed restrictions will only add to our traffic and workforce housing problems. Every additional unit added through this program should also be be restricted in square footage, so they are modest in size. There should be no price or rent caps, so that employers aren’t let off the hook for paying for the true cost of their employees. Otherwise, we will be inadvertently subsidizing the commercial expansion and job creation that is leading to our overpopulation problem, and that perpetuates our clogged roads and workforce housing deficit.

Regarding traffic, All these reallocated units should be located in the urban commercial core that stretches from Smiths to Dairy Queen. This is where density belongs. This is where people can live lives that don’t revolve around car ownership. The farther you get from the commercial urban core the more necessary it is to have a car. There should be no parking minimum requirement on these deed restricted units, in fact parking maximums should be considered.