REMARKS AS PREPARED
Governor Kate Brown
Statewide Housing Plan Launch Event
February 11, 2019
Good morning, I’m Governor Kate Brown.
I’m so pleased to be joining OHCS Director Salazar in launching Oregon’s Statewide Housing Plan. Thank you Margaret, for your leadership, and thank you to the talented team at Oregon Housing and Community Services for completing this timely and hugely important undertaking.
This Plan is an important achievement for OHCS as an agency, but even more so for Oregon. The data and research, and the six policy priorities that Margaret just shared will guide our state’s housing investments for years to come. Setting a trajectory that will endure even longer.
This Plan will inform how we collaborate with our partners who are doing this important work in their communities every day.
Work to develop and preserve affordable housing.
Work to provide shelter and housing services to our neighbors who need it the most.
Because we know that there is no single solution—not one entity, or one person—that can solve Oregon’s housing crises. It will take all of us working together: philanthropy, business leaders, developers, builders, and all levels of government. To prevent people from slipping into homelessness, to get people quickly off the street, and to help all Oregonians access stable homes.
This is an ambitious and historic Statewide Housing Plan. It will take an equally ambitious and historic investment from the Legislature to ensure that every Oregonian, in communities large and small, has access to housing choices that allow them and their families to thrive.
Housing instability and homelessness disproportionately affect families with children, low income families, rural areas, domestic violence survivors, our communities of color, and our veterans.
My goal as governor is to make sure that every Oregonian has the opportunity to thrive. That means having a warm, safe, and affordable place to call home.
Families need homes that are more than just four walls and a roof, with rents that don’t mean choosing which bill to pay, or what to do without this month.
My budget calls for $400 million in state investments. We must prioritize ending homelessness for Oregon’s children. We need to make sure no kid shows up to school after spending the night in a car.
We have to invest in permanent supportive housing. Because we can move people from street corners and doorways into homes by investing in proven strategies. We know that reduces costs down the line to our health care, emergency response, and criminal justice systems.
We need to house Oregon’s veterans. We need to continue our ongoing efforts to build lasting infrastructure and deploy immediate resources for street outreach, rapid rehousing, and emergency housing assistance.
And we can accelerate the growth of housing supply in greater Oregon by incentivizing public-private partnerships. They will help our employers and communities build the housing needed to support their workforce.
As we start this fourth week of the legislative session, I urge the Legislature to use this Statewide Housing Plan as a road map. And join me in ensuring that Oregon makes the investments needed to protect vulnerable renters while supporting and increasing Oregon’s development of housing supply.