Washington, D.C. - U.S. Representative Mike Bost testified today before a hearing of the House Financial Services Housing Subcommittee concerning the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s failed oversight of the Alexander County Housing Authority. Bost approached subcommittee chairman Sean Duffy (R-WI) for the hearing to shed light on the housing crisis in Cairo and prompt Congress to strengthen federal oversight.
“I have been working tirelessly to bring attention to the housing struggle in Cairo and am hopeful today’s hearing helped do so on a national stage,” said Bost. “The housing conditions in Cairo are most familiar to us in Southern Illinois, but there are dozens of public housing projects confronting similar problems across the country. Corruption and neglect have ruled the day for too long while innocent families continue falling through the cracks. We need answers on where the federal government failed in its oversight responsibilities and consider safeguards that will stop similar crises from happening in the future.”
“Today’s hearing was essential to help get to the bottom of the Alexander County Housing Authority’s (ACHA) troubling role in allowing living conditions in both the Elmwood and McBride housing developments to deteriorate so much that HUD has to demolish both of them and has taken over possession of the ACHA. Due to the actions of the ACHA, nearly 200 families will have to uproot their lives and move from Cairo, Illinois to another city,” said Duffy. “What’s even more frightening is this could just be the tip of the iceberg, as 50 other Public Housing Authorities have been designated as troubled by the HUD Inspector General. We have to make sure all 3,300 PHA’s comply with HUD’s policies and address health and safety hazards to make sure another situation like Cairo never happens again.”
NOTE: Watch Rep. Bost’s testimony HERE.