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City of Atlanta development arm adopts resolution on Section 8 vouchers

The move from the Invest Atlanta board, which doles out money to many city projects, adds practical effect to a resolution passed last month by the City Council.

ATLANTA — The City of Atlanta's economic development authority moved Thursday to adopt a resolution passed by the City Council last month that calls for new developments receiving city money to accept Section 8 housing vouchers from potential tenants.

Invest Atlanta said on Twitter that its board had adopted a resolution "to incorporate language for all residential housing development projects in accordance with City of Atlanta Resolution 22-R-4617."

As the city body that allocates money to most development projects, the move adds practical effect to the Council's resolution.

RELATED: How people with Section 8 housing vouchers can use them in a new way in Atlanta

The resolution was was adopted in a 13-0 vote on Nov. 21 (two council members were not at the meeting). It calls for "any residential housing development receiving financial incentives from the City of Atlanta" to make units "available to households utilizing Housing Choice Vouchers as a source of income."

The vouchers are distributed by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). 

Currently, there is a backlog of more than 20,000 people and families waiting for placement across the City of Atlanta, according to City Councilmember Liliana Bakhtiari, who pushed for the resolution. The measure hopes to help more people utilize these vouchers.  

In addition to requesting Invest Atlanta to adopt the policy, it also called on Atlanta BeltLine Inc., the Fulton County Development Authority, and MARTA to do the same.

 "Housing choice vouchers extend dignity to those who are doing everything within their means to participate in the American dream but still fall short," Councilwoman Bakhtiari, who represents District 5, said in a news release. "This legislation removes that social stigma and affirms Atlanta’s commitment to quality housing for everyone." 

According to Invest Atlanta figures, the development arm provided $679 million in capital investments in 2022, helping lead to the creation of 1,589 affordable units.

11Alive Investigators are examining why tents line Atlanta's freeways and why families struggle to find stable housing in their three-part series The Way Home. Read part one here.

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