57°F
weather icon Clear

Let’s get serious about attainable housing

Money has never meant much to me. Guess I was brought up to think that money was a necessity to pay bills and buy groceries.

My parents never owned their own home until my grandmother died, and the two-flat home they lived in most of their married life went to them.

I never dreamed of owning my own home. That opportunity did come, though, when I was over 40. In Chicago, we rented apartments and lived paycheck to paycheck. Our down payment for our Boulder City home came from an accident settlement to my husband made decades earlier but kept from him.

The money materialized in 1994, and we moved to Boulder City and bought our first home: a 1,050-square-foot condo, two bedrooms and a bath and a half. It was less than $100,000. That’s what we could afford.

Although I always worked hard, it was done out of necessity. I did have a few jobs that I loved, but I worked at them for what I could accomplish and not because of the money. Satisfaction and a sense of accomplishment were generally my reasons for accepting a job. If money came with it, fine, but I have left jobs that paid lots of money but weren’t worth 10 times the salary.

Am I unwise? Am I oblivious to saving for the future? Am I more concerned about how I live every day than earning a paycheck and being miserable? Perhaps, but I am comfortable with the choices I have made over the years.

I can’t speak for those with lots of money. I don’t know what that’s like. What I do know is that life can be exciting and worthwhile without very much.

So, if I, and I’m certain there are millions of others, can be and have been content with what we have, why is there so much “I’ve got mine, you get yours” going around?

I am 100 percent supportive of people working and contributing to society but categorizing folks with little or no money as bad or having the wrong “mind set” or being lazy is absurd, incorrect and untrue. One can be bad or lazy and have the wrong “mind set” and be rich just as well. Saying what you think is a right.

Categorizing millions simply because you can from a position of power is selfish and wrong.

So, let’s talk about affordable, or shall we call it, attainable housing. I support the concept of housing for everyone at a price they can afford. I believe we would agree that we do not support or want homelessness, so why is it so difficult to work toward attainable housing?

Folks say they don’t want homeless people in their neighborhood. Well, when they have a home in which to live, they are no longer homeless, correct?

For many years, I have worked with an organization called Family Promise that works with homeless families to get them stable and into housing. You don’t go from the street or living in your car to normalcy. Family Promise supports these families with the tools needed to become productive, beneficial members of the community.

There has been some conversation about school enrollment in Boulder City and how the town needs young families. Well, if that is the case, why not provide attainable housing in Boulder City? Family Promise has families that are ready and capable of moving into a home they can afford.

The city’s master plan addresses affordable housing in Chapter 10-3: “Selling land owned by the city or county, as applicable, to developers exclusively for the development of affordable housing at not more than 10 percent of the appraised value of the land, and requiring that any such savings, subsidy or reduction in price be passed on to the purchaser of housing in such a development.

“Donating land owned by the city or county to a nonprofit organization to be used for affordable housing.

“Leasing land by the city or county to be used for affordable housing.”

If the community truly wants attainable housing to attract families to Boulder City, let’s get serious. I’m ready to work.

Rose Ann Miele is a journalist and was public information officer for Boulder City for nine years. She can be reached at roseannrab@hotmail.com or at 702-339-9082.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
THE LATEST
Power of people remains at polls

This Sunday is the first anniversary of the Women’s March. Don’t fret, I’m not writing a commercial. I’m looking at a very abbreviated history of individuals coming together to make a statement.

Smiles plant seeds of hope

Before I sit down to write any commentary, I spend lots of time daily thinking about how to begin. What happened today? What needs addressing? I take so many things so seriously, I end up changing the focus daily. As soon as I submit one commentary, I begin thinking about the next. This one took longer than usual.

Action behind opinion sets city apart from others

For more than two decades, I’ve been getting to know Boulder City folks. I baked, cooked and waited on them at local restaurants. I reported news to them. I served them as foundation director at Boulder City Hospital. I worked as Boulder City’s public information officer. I ran for City Council and continue to be involved in city issues and volunteer organizations.

Sharing opinion first step in getting involved

Worrying could be a full-time job. You worry about yourself, the kids, relatives, your job — an endless list. There’s no energy left to get involved with city issues, much less volunteer your time. How can you do everything? Why should you?

Small investment in others reaps large rewards

What makes you so excited that you want to get up and do something? While that’s a matter of individual choice, let’s look at just two examples.

More need to see, study ‘Gateway’ plan

I’ve been sharing this link to the Hoover Dam Gateway plan (http://www.bcnv.org/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Agenda/_04192017-386) on Facebook. It points to the April 19 Planning Commission agenda packet. To read the plan, you must go to page 113, since it is not a single document.

Change to growth ordinance not good for residents

The other day, I found something I had written in May 1967. I didn’t believe my eyes. Fifty years ago I wrote that I wanted to do exactly what I am doing today.

Voting essential to being part of community

I’m old enough to remember a time when adults were the authority on everything. If you were a kid, what you said didn’t really matter, because the adults knew best. As a teenager, this was changing, and authority was being questioned.

Residents deserve answers to their questions

Information is tricky difficult to find. Town hall meetings where the public asks questions or even submit items for discussion to be shared publicly don’t take place. Public comments at meetings are limited to five minutes, and answering a speaker’s question or having a dialogue during this five minutes is not permitted. Put this all together, and you have those who believe, correctly or incorrectly, that something is being hidden.