HONOLULU (KHON2) — Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi held a news conference on Thursday, May 6 to announce the signing of two affordable rental bills.

The first bill provides up to $10 million in grants through May 2024 to eligible developers and property owners as an incentive to build more affordable rental units.

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Property owners can receive $9,000 or $15,000 per qualified unit based on the number of units rented to households below the area median income (AMI).

“We are excited about this new approach to building affordable housing. To be candid, government historically has spent a lot of time and money trying to build affordable housing, and it hasn’t done a good job. Bill 1 will allow us to incentivize the private sector to build the units at a fraction of the cost and time it would take the government to do the work. This will also help revitalize areas by transforming buildings that were left in disrepair and turning them into renovated places to live,” said Mayor Blangiardi. “I’d like to thank the City Council for passing this measure, maximizing opportunities for local contractors, builders and construction industry workers and expanding affordable rental housing for residents here on Oahu.”

Grants would be paid to owners of an eligible affordable rental housing project after completion of construction and issuance of a certificate of occupancy.

The second bill, Bill 88 (2020), CD2 supports the City’s effort to develop East Honolulu by outlining policies, guidelines and conceptual schemes that will serve as a guide for more detailed zoning maps and regulations.