Housing Colorado evaluates and takes positions on bills throughout the legislative session, based on its guiding values and annual priorities. Throughout the year, Housing Colorado may ask members of its Action Network and to help advocacy efforts by contacting legislators or by testifying before a committee. To add your voice to the Action Network, contact Housing Colorado's Executive Director, Sara Reynolds at 303-863-0124.
State Advocacy Guide
Housing Colorado distributes its Advocacy Toolkit annual at its Day Under the Dome event.
You can download a copy here: 2012 Housing Colorado Toolkit for Effective Advocacy.
Federal Advocacy Guide
The National Low Income Housing Coalitions 2012 Advocates Guide to Housing and Community Development Policy provides the most relevant housing and housing-related programs and issues at the federal level, as well as information related to the community planning process. The NLIHC's Guide is available online: nlihc.org/sites/default/files/2012-Advocates-Guide_0.pdf
Housing Colorado's Position and Policy Development Criteria
For Housing Colorado to adopt a position of support at any level, the policy must:
Be consistent with Housing Colorado's Guiding Values:
Affordable housing is a vital and integral component of sustainable communities, generating a wide range of economic and social benefits. The availability of affordable housing is an essential part of building healthy lives, communities and economies. Within these communities, everyone should have access to decent, safe and affordable housing.
Affordable housing must meet a range of housing needs, including low income households, persons with special needs, the elderly and the workforce.
Stable housing provides opportunities for individuals and families to pursue educational and economic goals. Affordable housing should be located near services, jobs, schools and transportation.
Housing Colorado must be able to work effectively with nonprofit, private and public partners and other stakeholders in order to achieve a range of innovative solutions.
Housing Colorado's advocacy and education priorities are inextricably linked and both are integral to achieving Housing Colorado's mission.
Have a statewide or regional impact (or have the potential to establish a precedent with statewide or regional impact).
Demonstrate the potential to accomplish at least one of the following:
Increase funding levels or sources for affordable housing or enhance the overall revenue climate
Preserve and/or expand existing housing programs
Increase the supply of shelter, affordable rental, or workforce units
Encourage the development of affordable housing (e.g. incentives, fee discounts, expedited permitting, etc.)
Remove barriers to the development of affordable housing (zoning/land use changes)
Make monthly housing costs more affordable or protect household budgets from predatory practices (energy assistance; payday lending reform)
Increase access to and integrity of affordable housing options (housing counseling, down payment assistance, fair housing enforcement)
Promote affordable housing in new developments and/or near transit nodes
Preserve existing affordable units
Enable responsible tenants to remain in affordable housing
Promote quality in affordable housing
Link needed support services to housing for special populations
Promote alliances with strategic partners
Levels of Support:
Active Support or Opposition -- when direct and demonstrable impact on affordable housing
Endorse Support/Opposition -- secondary impact on affordable housing or working in support of another strategic entity taking the lead position on an issue
Neutral/Monitoring -- when benefits to affordable housing appear to be marginal or some aspect of the bill and/or its impact are significantly evolving or yet unclear
Criteria is reviewed on a regular basis, based on the experience of the previous year.