There’s a job opening in Denver city government, a direct appointment of Mayor Michael Hancock in a role that will shape his legacy.
Denver is hiring an executive director for the new Office of Housing and Opportunities for People Everywhere. (That’s HOPE.)
According to the job description, the director “will create comprehensive and coordinated policies, initiatives and strategies that unify the City’s homeless, housing and other efforts. The Office will be tasked with achieving better outcomes for those utilizing our homeless, housing and other programs. The Executive Director also will enhance external partnerships and fundraising, and coordinate complementary efforts within the City and region.”
Salary will be commensurate with experience.
Hancock promised the creation of this office in his State of the City address this summer, where he also promised that Denver can have “development without displacement.”
The Denver City Council will vote this month on whether to raise property taxes and impose new impact fees on construction to raise roughly $150 million over 10 years for affordable housing projects. While the city has put general fund money into housing programs for the last several years, this would be the first time the city has had a dedicated funding source for affordable housing.
Displacement resulting from rapid gentrification and economic development has become one of the most contentious issues of Hancock’s administration.
The salary for the HOPE director will come out of general fund money, and most of the city’s housing programs will stay under the Office of Economic Development. However, the affordable housing fund, assuming it passes, will provide more money for the supportive housing options that help people get off the streets.