Congressman Bost: Be angry with Alexander Co. housing leaders, not HUD
"My anger is with that housing authority, and the blatant abuse of those positions," Bost said. "Abuse to the point that there are pending investigations."
Bost said he expects someone, or several people, in Alexander County to be held accountable for the deplorable conditions of the complexes.
"The Southern Illinoisan" newspaper documented years of lavish spending by current and former Alexander County Housing Authority employees in recent reporting. The spending included thousands of dollars of travel, meals, and bar tabs over the past few years.
Bost said the problems in Cairo are to blame on "terrible people" who abused their power.
"Someone, if not several, will be charged and must be charged for flagrantly violating the rights of these people," Bost added.
Housing and Urban Development leaders took over Cairo's Elmwood Place and McBride Place complexes in early 2016 after years of neglect. Investigators found mold and glaring problems with even basic maintenance. People living in the public housing complexes say their homes are close to third world conditions.
Bost said losing the homes, even in their deplorable condition, will shake Cairo to its core at a time when state and local leaders are looking to pump new life into the tiny town at the southern tip of the state.