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Knute Buehler on housing: Empty promises and no votes

Thu, 10/18/2018 - 13:51

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Republican Knute Buehler voted against tenant protections and opposes affordable housing solutions

Republican Knute Buehler is back at it. He voted against affordable housing and protections for tenants in the Legislature, but now he’s desperately trying to convince voters he’s going to solve homelessness.

As the Portland Mercury’s Alex Zielinski reported following Buehler’s shameless press stunt this morning, “It's clear Buehler hasn't done his homework.”

“Asked by the Mercury to detail his plan for Wapato, Buehler's campaign staff emailed a copy of Buehler's "homelessness plan," which supports turning "surplus government properties" into homeless shelters. It is not a plan to turn Wapato into a homeless shelter. That may be because every past iteration of this plan has been proven far too costly for taxpayers to support—and leaves little funding left over for the local homeless programs that have demonstrated success.”

Read the full report from The Portland Mercury here: Knute Buehler Proposes Empty "Plan" to Turn Wapato Jail into Shelter

Buehler even struggled to answer basic questions about how he would address homelessness in an interview with Willamette Week last week.

A brief survey of Buehler’s record on housing includes: 

  • Buehler announced his opposition to the Metro housing bond proposal on the November ballot to build at least 2,400 affordable housing units. [Willamette Week, 8/14/18]

  • In 2015, Buehler opposed offering state land for affordable housing. The bill gave developers of affordable housing the right of first refusal to buy state-owned property and was signed into law by Governor Brown. [Oregon House floor vote on HB 3524, 6/17/15]

  • In July 2015, Buehler was missing for votes on housing bonds and a program to fast track low income housing for Oregon families.  [Oregon State Legislature HB 5005 and HB 2198, 7/6/15]

  • On June 30, 2017, Buehler voted against funding the Housing and Community Services Department. This budget included funds for rental assistance to extremely low income persons with disabilities, the Elderly Rental Assistance Program, and money for Emergency Housing, State Homeless Assistance, Low Income Rental Housing Fund, and the Housing Choice Landlord Guarantee programs. [Oregon State Legislature, 6/30/17].

“In the legislature he voted against solutions and now he’s trying to tell voters a totally different story to get their votes,” said Christian Gaston, communications director for Governor Brown’s campaign. “Oregonians know they can’t trust Knute Buehler.”