If you live in the projects, you could end up homeless
If you live in public housing in Orlando, you should be very worried about your future.
In a meeting earlier this month, Vivian Bryant, CEO of the Orlando Housing Authority, said the agency plans to demolish Griffin Park, Murchison Terrace, Reeves Terrace, Lake Mann Homes, Ivey Lane Homes, Lorna Doone projects because they are in poor condition and too expensive to repair.
Ms. Bryant said the agency hopes to rebuild the rundown housing authority communities. In the past, housing authorities, have applied to HUD for grants and other assistance for construction and repairs.
However, HUD Secretary Carson said the federal government can’t afford public housing anymore. During a Congressional hearing earlier this year, Carson said public housing should be privatized under the Rental Assistance Demonstration project.
The RAD program, which started under the Obama administration, encourages private developers to renovate, rebuild and sometimes manage and own public housing communities. The developers get low-income tax credits to do the work. The renovated housing units are supposed to stay affordable.
Unfortunately, the RAD program has many problems. For example, people around the country have complained that they ended up homeless when their housing authority communities were renovated under RAD.
At the recent housing authority meeting, Ms. Bryant promised residents that they would not wind up out on the street. However, she didn’t explain how the housing authority would be able to continue to ensure housing for current residents.
Orlando Commissioner Regina Hill said she and other city officials were “blindsided” by the news that the federal government planned to cut support to public housing. However, the letter from HUD detailing the RAD plan was sent to the Orlando Housing Authority on Nov. 13, 2018.
The Orlando Housing Authority currently has more than 40,000 people on the waiting lists for public-housing apartments, or for Section 8 housing.
A recent report by the National Low Income Housing Coalition showed that Orlando has the worst low-income housing crisis in the nation.