Letter to the editor: School district had a chance to address teacher housing | SummitDaily.com

Letter to the editor: School district had a chance to address teacher housing

Tim Gagen

I read with great interest the July 26 article on teacher turnover due to a lack of affordable housing, but I believe you have missed an important part of the history of affordable housing for teachers in the county.

As the retired, former manager of Breckenridge, I saw and worked on the many efforts by the town, county and the other towns to address the lack of affordable housing. During my tenure, Breckenridge Town Council reached out to the Summit School District board repeatedly looking for ways to partner to create housing targeted at teachers at little or no cost to the district. One of the partnership concepts was the town taking the lead to build the housing if the district would provide the land, which they have plenty of, following a successful model being done in Basalt. This and other ideas were met with a total lack of action by the different school district boards during this period.

Their only response was to do studies about future needs of the district. We wondered how many studies were needed to see the obvious excess land the district owns. As I reflect on my tenure as manager, this inability to get the district to play a role in the affordable housing needs of the county was one of my greatest regrets. Just think, if 15 or more years ago we were able to form a partnership and start creating housing for teachers maybe the housing situation for teachers highlighted in your article would not be as dire as it is today.

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