Honolulu is famous for its glass doors.
But as many as 70% of the city’s population live below the poverty line, and even those who can afford to pay rent can’t always afford the privilege of having a home built or maintained.
The most recent housing crisis brought this reality to the forefront of national politics.
In Hawaii, Hawaii state lawmakers passed a bill last week to create a state housing emergency fund that would allow households with less than $30,000 in income to apply for the program.
If a tenant is approved, they’ll receive a subsidy of $15 per month for two years.
The program is intended to help people who are trying to make ends meet and can’t afford to buy a home.
But the bill also includes a provision that would expand the program to include families with incomes of more than $150,000.
Hawaii has some of the nation’s strictest rent control laws, meaning landlords cannot ask for more than 30% of their rent to be paid to tenants.
In 2016, a state appeals court ruled that the state’s rent control law is unconstitutional.
The Supreme Court has not yet weighed in on the issue.
Hawaii has also passed a controversial measure to allow landlords to deduct rent from the income of renters who have lived in the same unit for at least three years.