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Paul Allen’s Vulcan builds tiny homes for Seattle’s homeless

Just two weeks after the Seattle City Council unanimously passed a head tax on big business to help fund city’s homeless initiative, Vulcan’s employees and volunteers spent the day building tiny homes.

RELATED: Seattle head tax 101

Vulcan, a Paul Allen company, is one of the many Seattle businesses funding the No Tax on Jobs referendum in response to the head tax. According to a campaign disclosure obtained by The Stranger, Vulcan donated $25,000 to the fundraising effort.

Vulcan tweeted:

Spending the day with our colleagues from across @PaulGAllen’s network assembling 30 tiny homes with @LIHIhousing and other local construction companies.

A small effort to tackle Seattle’s homelessness crisis.

More than 130 executives urged in a letter the city council not to pass the head tax, stating that they’d work with the council to come up with a solution to the city-declared crisis. That effort failed and the council passed legislation to tax businesses making more than $20 million annually in gross receipts $275 per employee, which is expected to raise $47 million annually.

Since then, No Tax on Jobs launched a campaign with Saul Spady, grandson of the founder of Dick’s Drive-In, at the helm. He has until June 15 to gather 18,000 signatures if he wants the referendum to make the ballot. Spady told KTTH’s Jason Rantz there are so many ways to help the homeless without having to penalize Seattle businesses, one being high-density dorm-style housing located near light rail stations.

Vulcan is taking a different approach with tiny homes, but it’s not a new concept for a city struggling to find a way to properly deal with its homeless population. Most recently, Rantz reports the City of Seattle applied for a permit to house up to 305 homeless people at a low-barrier tiny home village in South Lake Union.


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