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OFFICE OF THE GOVERNOR — News Release — Governor Ige signs new housing rules aimed at increasing affordable units in Kakaako

Posted on Jun 28, 2018 in Latest Department News, Office of the Governor Press Releases


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HONOLULU – Governor David Ige has approved new affordable housing rules for Kakaʻako, a major step forward in the state’s efforts to expand living options for low and moderate-income families.


The amendments to the Hawaiʻi Community Development Authority (HCDA) rules regarding reserved housing in Kakaʻako include a 10-year restriction on re-sales and an equity sharing program for workforce housing.


“The new rules are a key part of our plan to help bring more affordable housing to Kakaʻako. They strike a balance between affordable mandates while also making projects financially feasible. We’re really in a position to do Kakaʻako better. All the tools are there,” said Gov. Ige.


Among the recent actions Gov. Ige has taken to support affordable housing:


  • $200 million allocated to the Hawai‘i Housing Finance and Development Corporation’s (HHFDC) Rental Housing Revolving Fund – the highest amount dedicated to affordable housing in state history. (Act 39)


  • Extended the general excise tax exemption for certain affordable rental housing projects from June 30, 2022 to June 30, 2026, and increased the cap on GET exemptions to $30 million per year until 2030. (Act 39)


  • Made targeted policy changes to support production, including HHFDC’s acceptance of applications for 4 percent Low Income Housing Tax Credits year-round instead of just once a year.


“We now have the opportunity to really increase the supply of units and generate the types of affordable and workforce housing that Hawai‘i needs. I challenge the community, developers, the construction industry and the banks to all come together and build the housing units that we need,” Gov. Ige said.


The HCDA rule changes signed Thursday help make the agency’s rules more consistent with HHFDC’s rules. HHFDC has the same 10-year resale restriction and a similar shared equity provision. The new HCDA rules are also responsive to both advocates and developers. Under the new rules, HCDA’s board also has greater flexibility to respond to changing market conditions.


Accelerating production of housing units statewide has been one of Gov. Ige’s top priorities.


Since 2014, when Gov. Ige took office, the state has completed 5,300 new homes statewide, including 2,000 affordable homes. There are an additional 1,400 units under construction, and another 4,000 units in the planning phase.


In Kakaʻako, housing production is up 500 percent since 2014 – with 1,100 units built each year, compared to 200 units a year over the last 30 years.


The Governor has long advocated for significant investment to support affordable housing. (See table below)


Thursday’s HCDA rules signing was the latest in a series of actions the Ige Administration has taken in recent weeks to support affordable housing.


On June 8, the Governor signed into law Act 39, a comprehensive housing measure aimed at increasing production of affordable rental units across the state. The $200 million provided by this act will enable the HHFDC to generate an additional 1,600 affordable units.


The following week, on June 14, the HHFDC Board of Directors tentatively approved applications for $182 million in state financing for 12 new affordable housing projects, covering about 1100 units, to be built over the next 2-3 years. Of the approved projects, $22.2 million was awarded for three projects.




Media Contacts:

Jodi Leong

Deputy Communications Director/Press Secretary

Office of the Governor

Office: 808-586-0043

Mobile: 808-798-3929

[email protected]


Cindy McMillan

Communications Director

Office of the Governor

Office: 808-586-0012

Mobile: 808-265-7974

[email protected]