The first thing that comes to mind when there is mention of an affordable housing project in Missoula, is projects in other places. You know, the ones where even the law is fearful to tread. Can't happen in this community?
It so happens that there is a possibility of such a scenario because one of these projects may be built in the county law enforcement compound which already has housing — called a jail. It is very likely, with population growth, that a larger incarceration unit will have to be built. In which case, with prior planning in construction, you just evict tenants in the housing, remodel with a few bars, and voila, there is a larger jail.
Build a better mouse trap and the world will beat a path to your door. Substitute affordable housing for mouse trap and see what happens. The end result being more people looking for affordable housing that is still insufficient.
Can county commissioners just give away land for housing that was purchased for future needs of county law enforcement? Ask the taxpayers of the whole county how they feel to be left out of the decision. I would bet they'd rather just give the commissioners away.
Greg J. Houska,