Affordable Housing and New Agreement with PWSA

City Council Gives Unanimous Approvals

Joe DeStio
July 24, 2019 - 4:27 pm
Affordable housing for Lawrenceville and a new agreement between the city and its water and sewer authority have received final approval from Pittsburgh Council.

Joe DeStio

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PITTSBURGH (Newsradio 1020 KDKA) – Affordable housing for Lawrenceville and a new agreement between the city and its water and sewer authority have received final approval from Pittsburgh Council.

Councilwoman Deb Gross’s bill creates an affordable housing overlay district in Lawrenceville. It requires developers of 20 or more new housing units to make ten percent of those units affordable using federal median income numbers.

“This is a really historic moment”, said Gross. “This is one of the major items that was suggested by our affordable housing task force.”

The aim is to stem the flow of longtime Lawrenceville residents out of the neighborhood because of skyrocketing housing prices. Approval was unanimous.

Council also gave unanimous approval to a formal agreement between the city and the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority. The deal promises to keep the PWSA under public ownership. It requires the city to pay for the water it uses. The PWSA would begin paying into the city pension fund and make voluntary payroll tax contributions.

Councilwoman Teresa Kail-Smith voted yes with reservations. “I’ll vote in favor today because I think without our voice advocating for the residents, they would have no one,” said kail-Smith.

Either party can terminate the agreement with 90 days notice.

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