When state legislators met in Jackson two weeks ago they ripped the scab off a wound many Jacksonites were still nursing. The pain comes from a battle of state versus local control that played out with several bills during the last legislative session, and again two weeks ago.
The Corporations, Elections and Political Subdivisions Committee convened for two days in Jackson on September 16 and 17. During that time they met with the advocacy group Jackson Hole Working for a lunch meeting that wasn’t listed on their agenda. After its meeting with JH Working, the committee voted to revisit House Bill 277. That bill would decimate Jackson’s affordable housing program by stripping control from towns and counties.
JH Working’s Jessica Jaubert said members also discussed their lived experiences in Wyoming and issues like childhood education. But it was their discussion on housing that was most impactful. Goshen County’s Rep. Shelly Duncan referred back to the “testimony” from members of JH Working when the committee held that vote to revisit House Bill 277.
So where exactly does JH Working stand when it comes to affordable housing? What do they want to see happen in the valley regarding future development? Local architect and former town planning commissioner John Stennis happens to be on JH Working’s board of directors. KHOL sat down with him for more.