Amended Housing Bill Recieves Backlash; Sponsoring Councilman Defends It

Posted at 6:29 PM, Oct 24, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-24 19:29:27-04

The Barnes Affordable Housing Trust Fund was created with the intent to help non profit developers bring affordable housing to Nashville. "It's not doing what we need it to do," District 2 Councilman DeCosta Hastings said. 

In Buena Vista new developments are popping up on every other street, however Hastings said he wants it done the right way with the right people moving in.

"Affordable housing is not low income, not the entities MDHA takes care of," Hastings explained. 

In recent months he said his constituents have voiced concerns about who's moving into some of the new homes in the area.

"If we get the wrong constituents, if we get the wrong people inside of those places that are renting houses that are worth $300,000. They're doing drugs...," Hastings said. 

He points to one new home as an example, which he said has been shot up more than a dozen times.

"Not only was it shot up 18 times, this is a $300,000 house that your tax dollars here in the Metro government are paying for," said Hastings. 

Hastings has proposed an amendment to a bill he sponsored which would include a written tenant conduct clause.

However, some have sounded off against it, calling it discriminatory. One writer states the ordinance "blatantly targets low-income tenants."

Another writes, "it specifically targets the Barnes Fund and singles out vulnerable citizens."

Hastings, however, said he just wants to make sure his neighborhood is moving in the right direction. "We do not want to develop a smaller sector of housing projects all over our city," said Hastings. 

The amended ordinance was deferred at the last council meeting. Board members with N.O.A.H. tell us they plan to discuss the issue with Councilman Hastings on Tuesday.