New Utah program will give priority affordable housing to public service workers

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Utah Workforce Housing Priority program{ } launches. (KUTV)

A new program designed to help public service workers in Utah is now underway.

Currently, Utah has a problem of not having enough housing for service sector workers.

Some say that’s a good problem to have.

The new program, called Utah Workforce Housing Priority, will give first priority on affordable housing to service sector workers such as police officers, nurses, firefighters, construction workers, veterans, and teachers.

It will do so by reserving specific lots throughout the state for “professions vital to building our communities,” Ivory Homes said in a news release.

The program is also designed to help first-time home buyers earning less than $70,000/year.

“In a climate of increasing housing prices and affordability challenges, we have a responsibility to help those who help each of us become homeowners,” said Clark Ivory, CEO of Ivory Homes. “We are committed to be a leader in solving Utah’s housing affordability challenges by supporting educators, public safety professionals, veterans, members of our military, and construction trades people who build our homes.”

A report from the University of Utah Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute shows housing options for teachers and other public service employees are very limited.

The report estimates only 8.8% of housing options in 2017 were affordable to a first-year public school teacher or a similar public service professional.

"Those on the Utah Workforce Housing Priority list will be given preference for more than 150 lots in 19 different cities," Ivory Homes stated in a news release. "In addition to priority access to these homes, Ivory Homes will also be giving these homebuyers $2,000 towards or options, such as washer and dryer, refrigerator, window coverings or other options offered by Ivory Homes. "

You can sign up here.