HUD wants public housing investorsSubmitted by bobbyw24 on Wed, 07/06/2011 - 08:35
By JOSEPH WILLIAMS | 7/5/11 11:31 PM EDT
The Obama administration wants the private sector to help rescue public housing.
A Housing and Urban Development Department study released last month found that the nation’s 1.2 million public housing units need more than $25 billion in overdue repairs and major upgrades — a sum that Congress, in a budget-cutting frenzy, is unlikely to approve.
So HUD hopes banks and real estate developers will invest in the low-income homes to help finance the work. The plan would reinforce a frayed safety net, one becoming more critical as millions struggle to find affordable housing amid a foreclosure crisis and a sluggish economy.
“We’re not keeping pace” with badly needed public housing repairs, including crumbling ceilings, bad plumbing or outdated wiring, HUD Assistant Secretary Sandra Henriquez told POLITICO. Henriquez said housing authorities under the plan could secure loans or court investors to help HUD “preserve the public housing stock that has had a 75-year federal investment.”