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Public Housing (Section 8) Changes Under Trump

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    The US Dept of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) under the Trump administration is looking to make cuts to the public housing program, ultimately making it far more difficult and expensive to be apart of public housing, perhaps better known as 'Section 8 housing'.

    These proposed changes are a long ways a way from being implemented. And its not clear at all if any of these changes will ever fully pass through Congress, but here is what the head of HUD, Ben Carson, is proposing to change:

    • Private owners of project-based subsidized properties and public housing authorities would be given the discretion to set standards, through so-called work requirements, on the minimum number of hours that individuals and families must work in order to qualify for federal assistance.
    • Tripling of the minimum rent from $50/month to $150/month.
    • A change in the way rent is calculated for subsidized housing; instead of paying 30% of your household income after taxes, it would be 35% before taxes, regardless of disability status or age.
    • Elimination of income deductions that helps reduce rent for elderly tenants and people with disabilities, such as child care costs or medical costs.

    Combined together, these changes are clearly aimed at making a government program that's already incredibly hard to take advantage of even harder. Rents go up a few different ways. More discrimination is allowed. And it seems the folks depending on this program the most, those on a fixed budget without means of being gainfully employed (disabled) will be disproportionately affected the most.

    I can't fully decide where I stand on all this. From the way I presented this information, and the cited source I chose, so far I know this reads like I am obviously against these proposals because they make the program worse. And that's true.

    I am not for half-assed governmental welfare programs. Proposed cuts like this just put people that are already in a bad spot in a worse spot. I know the incentive is to spend less on welfare overall and cut wherever possible. But shouldn't it be a net positive for the country when you do this? Where is the net gain? Won't this just add more poverty, harder strapped citizens and more desperation to take advantage of other welfare programs?

    What I am failing to see when it comes to the Trump administration's many proposals to slash funding to welfare programs is a clear plan to offset the damage it will do to those currently depending on these programs. Where is the offsetting plan?

    I agree that as a whole the government needs to simply spend less. In many ways we have created something of an unsustainable monster. But since we are here, and we did this as a country, I don't think the answer is wholesale cuts with no alternative. It's just like wanting to repeal Obamacare without a viable replacement. Sure, make it better. But just to cut the budget without a replacement seems unnecessarily cruel and short sided.

    Very curious of a rebuttal to all this. Or what anyone on Section 8/Public Housing thinks of these proposals.

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    Here is some reading on the HUD proposals. These go into way more depth on public housing as a whole.

    The Latest HUD Proposal Would Exacerbate the Housing Insecurity Crisis

    Section 8 Changes Under Trump

    Explaining The Possible Changes To Public Housing

    An Improvement to Ben Carson’s Public-Housing Proposal

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    I spent a few years living in Section 8 housing, so I think I can give a decent perspective here. Though it's important to note, we were not on government assistance (of that type) ourselves, but the environment was the same.

    I feel it's really important to mention the abusers. I know, it's a really touchy subject. But its a reality that can't be ignored when talking about more aggressive requirement changes like these.

    First of all, I've seen more people abusing the programs than those who actually needed it (specifically speaking from the perspective of a daily housing project tenant). And by abuse, I mean possessing more than enough money to live on (no matter how it was gotten), but still getting assistance and laughing about it. Getting "free money, free rent, free cell phones, free food" was a huge running joke that everyone laughed at. It actually made me feel terrible for the people who really needed it. They would tell me they were scared it would stop at any time, due to the amount of people abusing it. They would be terrified to open a piece a mail with government stamps on them, thinking they were going to get dropped.

    I want to be really clear here and say that I do not think that most people abuse government assistance. But I do think there is a serious issue with the number of people that are able to and do abuse it. I think this is where tighter regulations could/should come in. Keep the people who actually do need assistance safe, while dropping/denying the people who don't. But there're soo many holes in that one argument.... For instance, it's so easy for someone sitting in a cubicle a thousand miles away to deny someone assistance simply because the numbers are right at the denial point. They just don't have all the information.

    As for this:

    • Private owners of project-based subsidized properties and public housing authorities would be given the discretion to set standards, through so-called work requirements, on the minimum number of hours that individuals and families must work in order to qualify for federal assistance.

    This is....dangerous. First of all, there shouldn't be "Private owners" of Section 8 properties. But again, I know. It's much easier said than done.... Giving these private owners discretion (power) of who gets assistance is not a good idea at all. That opens the door to all types of discrimination and conflicts of interest.

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    PentagonWall Wrote:

    As for this:

    • Private owners of project-based subsidized properties and public housing authorities would be given the discretion to set standards, through so-called work requirements, on the minimum number of hours that individuals and families must work in order to qualify for federal assistance.

    This is....dangerous. First of all, there shouldn't be "Private owners" of Section 8 properties. But again, I know. It's much easier said than done.... Giving these private owners discretion (power) of who gets assistance is not a good idea at all. That opens the door to all types of discrimination and conflicts of interest.

    Interesting. Why don't you think there should be private owners? Essentially the way it works right now is an owner of an apartment complex or housing development, etc can opt to be a part of the section 8/public housing program, getting benefits from the state that allows them to discount the monthly rent.

    If private owners weren't doing this, then all public housing would have to be government/state own and ran. That seems a bit dangerous to me actually.

    Maybe I'm misunderstanding.. why is private ownership a bad thing here?

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    well I believe "we" need Trump over here in Chicago & "double dare" him to face us (person-to-person) & quit doubletalking, & use plain English on what HE feels we need to understand! so far I'm ignoring anything he says, only because HE needs to listen to us first!!! The ones he's AFFECTING!