Entries Tagged 'Affordable Housing' ↓

Sioux Falls CountCilor Jensen continues to push useless trickle-down policies when it comes to housing

You know what they say, even if you know your are wrong, never admit it, just dig in deeper. During the latest episode of Inside Town Hall in which Councilor Brekke tells us to eat more vegetables and drive electric cars, Jensen continues to push the narrative that if we just give contractors and developers even more tax breaks we will get more housing (he supports legislative proposals that would create entire neighborhood TIFs, instead of individual homeowners and a rebate of excise taxes to contractors). While at the same time promoting (low-wage) workers to live someplace else. When it comes to affordable and accessible housing, it starts at the bottom, not at the top. But not in Sioux Falls, hand all the TIFilicious goodies to the ones at the top hoping they will throw us some crumbs while spray painting the poorer neighborhoods sidewalks.

And why would we NOT think Alex’s plan wouldn’t work? He works at the number #1 bank in the Nation, and he had no problem advertising the place while appearing on a tax payer funded program. Actually surprised me because every time he sits on the dais at Carnegie he has no problem flaunting his SF City Council logo wear puffy vest we all paid for (even though I suggested they just all get magnetic badges instead). It must have been at the cleaners when he recorded this show so he had to wear his primary employer’s vest instead.

City of Sioux Falls Housing Funding is Hypocritical

First off, many have wondered what happened to the housing coordinator. Not sure if Chellee Unruh was terminated or quit, but I guess she departed in April with no fanfare and no press release from City Hall. Seems a lot of Paul’s directors seem to disappear these days in the dark of night. There are often rumors of termination but no verifications from the big man himself. He must be busy taking selfies on bike rides or something. There was even a funny rumor a few weeks ago that Stoneless fired a public works minion (personally) after a citizen video-taped him flipping the bird. Not sure if that is true, but if it is, I got a good laugh. Hope he gave him a hug and a Guadd Bles Yah before he walked off.

Either or on housing, yesterday at the informational meeting a non-profit wants $500K from the city for a victim’s home for women saved from the sex trafficking industry. While I have no issues with this funding (except that they are probably one of those Christian conversion places) I find it a bit ironic that this administration AND police department can’t get a handle on all the illegal massage going on in our community when they know exactly where these places are. Heck, everyone knows where they are. You would have to be a complete dolt to not know where to get a tug and rub in Sioux Falls!

I think if I was on the council I would include an extra $1 million to the sex crimes unit with the PD to show that they are serious about it, I would also get the new Police Chief to make it his top priority. Kind of seems pointless to help a victim’s home if we are not going to do anything to stop these businesses in Sioux Falls. Isn’t prevention the key?

Also, doesn’t anyone find it a bit odd when these rare stings happen, the ‘victims’ are always apprehended but somehow the Johns and Pimps slip a way? Things that make you go Hmmmm.

Erickson & Jensen want to talk to you about housing, if you can make it

The only problem is you will have to be late for work to have that conversation with them;

Public Invited to Discuss Strategies to Expand Homeownership in Sioux Falls 
Councilors Alex Jensen and Christine Erickson will hear from citizens on how the city can make homeownership more accessible in Sioux Falls. Ideas gained from this outreach effort could be used for future legislative efforts intended to tackle the lack of homeownership opportunities. 
When: Thursday, May 20th 
Where: HyVee at 37th and Minnesota 
Time: 7:30am to 9:00am 

I have often noticed that if city councilors really want to hear from constituents they have these kind of meetings on a Saturday or after 5 PM. The Vice-CountCilor and Errackticson have ZERO interest in talking to constituents about these issues, that is why they are doing it on a Thursday morning when most working class stiffs are at work. Jensen even said in the meeting yesterday something like, “We would like to discuss these ideas with developers and contractors, oh, and I guess the public can come to.” You can’t make this stuff up, even if you tried.

Augustana to do another Housing Study

This is in the consent agenda of the SF City Council on Tuesday Night

I can’t believe it has been 4 years since Augie put out their study. Once the study is completed in 2021 I have no doubt that the actual numbers of people needing housing will have gone up, but I also believe the percentages will have gone up also. I still don’t know what our community has done in the past 4 years that encouraged more and better affordable housing. I may be proven wrong, but I don’t think this report is going to be any rosier. Now, I don’t want to get all negative nancy about it. There are sectors of our community that or doing well, but like the last study pointed out, there is a significant wealth gap, and I think it will be even wider.

There is something else I am going to call the ‘Amazon’ factor. I have NO doubt that they will have to draw in workers not only from the region but from across the country to get enough. Some have been curious why our local elected officials haven’t been standing on soap boxes bragging about it. I will tell you why, because they know about the low wages Amazon pays and what kind of worker this will attract. Hard to brag about bringing business to Sioux Falls when that business pays the same as fast food. I actually believe that bringing Amazon here will create more social ills for our community. I don’t think our local or state officials had a choice in the matter, let’s face it, it’s Amazon, they will do what they want to. There was no carrot on the end of a stick leading them here, it was logistics.

I am also curious if the city is the only entity funding this study? Any non-profits? The counties? The school district?


I finally finished reading the 227 page Report (DOC: Affordable_Housing_Needs_Assessment_2016). I encourage others to do the same.

I will be breaking down some of the more interesting STATS I pulled from the report.

My initial analysis is that Sioux Falls is going down a GRIM path when it comes to Affordable Housing, unless we take action NOW. This is what the report is encouraging.

The Report Points out;

Poor or No coordination and inefficiency between affordable housing organizations

Household incomes at or below $25K are increasing at a drastic rate and the divide between rich and poor is growing while middle income stays stagnant.

Extreme population growth has contributed to problem.

The task force recommends starting with the most vunerable, children living in poverty.

This table shows the gap between rich and poor and really how the poor are getting poorer and the rich increasing at a faster pace.

This table shows the projected enormous growth in the Healthcare industry in SF.

This shows the poverty that exists within our school system.

37% of SF workers make under $25K


This table shows the exploding home values.

This breaks down rental property in zip codes.

This breaks down rental rates in SF.

This breaks down income and home ownership.

This shows the percentages of school kids living in poverty.


These are some comments from people looking for affordable housing.

These comments prove that affordable housing needs to be built in our core and not out by $300K homes.

These comments are about all the ‘HYPE’ in national rating firms and magazines.


Affordable housing demands.

I love the following suggestions. I have often thought that TIF’s are being misused in SF, and should be directed at affordable housing like the Fargo model.

Final sources.

How about better paying jobs?

While I do agree we need affordable housing in Sioux Falls, I think it should be a private venture with tax and de-regulation incentives attached. One of the main reasons I bought a home was to save myself money on renting, my mortgage with escrow is about 75% of what most of my friends pay in rent (money they will never see again). Housing is affordable in Sioux Falls, apartments are not. We should be spending the money on encouraging home ownership. Taxpayer subsidies for affordable housing is just putting a bandaid on the problem;

Affordable housing is likely to be just one issue that comes up tonight as council members take up the budget.

I think we should focus on stopping unemployment in Sioux Falls and start bringing in higher paying manufacturing jobs instead of encouraging people to stay in a working poor job.