YAKIMA, Wash. — Katy Cole, a single mother of five, spent six years on a waiting list to get rental assistance from the Yakima Housing Authority, scrimping each month to pay her rent.

“It’s always a struggle because you have to carry money over from one paycheck to another just to pay rent,” she said.

She’s not alone.

Yakima County has long grappled with a shortage of affordable housing, making it difficult at best for financially struggling residents to secure a place to live.

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