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I’ve previously written about Marion Barry’s proposals to fortify an affordable housing fund, which has emptied out in recent years since the economy has tanked. A previous proposal ensured $100 million or 15 percent of the deed taxes, whichever is higher, into a special trust fund for affordable housing each year. Well earlier this week, the D.C. council passed a bill committing $50 million annually into The Housing Production Trust Fund. Here’s more on the law from the Washington Business Journal:

The Housing Production Trust Fund, used by the city to build and preserve subsidized housing, took in $59 million in fiscal 2007 but just $34 million in fiscal 2008, due to a precipitous drop in deed and recordation taxes because of the slow real estate market. Its estimated take in the current fiscal year was only $29 million.

The new law locks in $50 million annually from the two taxes before any money goes to the city’s general coffers. The housing fund is a key source of revenue for the New Communities program, in which the city plans to overhaul four public housing projects into mixed income developments.