AUSTIN – While the cost of living is much more affordable in Texas than other large states, there are still places where housing costs are high, including Austin. To examine the extent of the housing problem in Texas, and determine if there is a link between housing costs and local government regulations on land use, the Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Center for Economic Freedom will host the panel “Do Property Rights Help the Poor? Affordable Housing in Texas” at the 14th Annual Policy Orientation for the Texas Legislature on Friday, January 8, 2016 at 11:30 am CST at the Hilton Austin Hotel in Meeting Room 616.

“Affordable housing starts with the protection of private property,” said Kathleen Hunker, senior policy analyst with the Center for Economic Freedom at the Texas Public Policy Foundation. “Texas residents have seen housing costs soar over the last few years at rates much faster than gains in income. Population growth certainly plays a role, but so does the tight fist that Texas cities have closed around land development. TPPF research shows that land-use restrictions add to the cost of housing. January’s policy primer will provide a chance to identify where regulations add to that burden unnecessarily.”
Panelists include:

  • Representative Diego BernalTexas House of Representatives
  • Randal O’TooleSenior Fellow, Cato Institute
  • Phyllis SnodgrassCEO, Austin Habitat for Humanity
  • Geoffrey TahuahuaVice President of Public Policy, Home Builders Association of Greater Austin
  • Kathleen HunkerSenior Policy Analyst, Center for Economic Freedom at the Texas Public Policy Foundation (Moderator) 

For over thirteen years, the Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Policy Orientation has been one of the nation’s top policy conferences, selling out each year while bringing together lawmakers, policy experts, and engaged citizens from across the political spectrum to discuss critical issues facing the Lone Star State and America. This year’s program includes more than 35 panel discussions and debates on the major issues affecting Texas’ future. 
Members of the public and media who wish to attend may register and view the agenda at:

Kathleen Hunker is a senior policy analyst with the Center for Economic Freedom at the Texas Public Policy Foundation.

The Texas Public Policy Foundation is a non-profit, free-market research institute based in Austin, Texas.

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