What does mandatory busing look like in the twenty-first century? It looks like “Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing,” a new regulation imposed by Barack Obama’s Department of Housing and Urban Development, which forces low-income tenants to move out of their existing homes in cities and into the suburbs.
If the city-dwellers choose not to participate, they will experience a reduction in the subsidies they’ve been receiving. It’s a Catch-22 for the poor that has the added bonus of lowering real estate and housing values in the ‘burbs.
Starting this fall, HUD will be reallocating funding for Section 8 housing in order to make suburbs “less white and less wealthy.” Secretary Julian Castro anticipates finalizing what is called the “Small-Area Fair Market Rents” (SAFMR) law this October, in the final days of Obama’s reign.
Here is where the “mobility counselors” of the post’s title come in. The counselors are government real estate agents whose job is move Section 8 tenants into more affluent neighborhoods, which (by the way) most Americans could not afford.
The median household income for the entire United States, as of September, 2014, adjusting for inflation, is $51,939. (2013 was 8% lower than the median household income of 2007). Compare the U.S. median household income to the median household income to the more affluent suburb of Westchester County, N.Y.
According to the 2005-2009 U.S. Census American Community Survey, the median household income for Westchester County was $79,585. Westchseter’s income exceeds the median for New York State ($55,233) and New York City ($63,553).
Yet, Obama is intent on importing Section 8 tenants to above-the-median neighborhoods on a much larger scale – even after this very initiative has already been shown to have caused increased crime in the affluent neighborhoods of Dallas.
Obama’s plan requires no congressional approval. This is being administered through a bureaucratic agency run by unelected officials. And the poor are being forced to move or receive less money to stay in their homes. (Unless, of course they find employment and can pay to live in their current neighborhoods.)
This is not a voluntary moving process where someone looking for a place to live and finds a realtor. Quite the contrary, the arrangement is nanny-statism at its worst, and mobility counselors are a perfect example of communism in its clearest form.
Those who live in less expensive zip codes and subsidies will receive double the amount if they move to a location a mobility counselors designates for them. However, if they choose not to move, they will lose a substantial amount of their existing subsidies.
Ultimately, in order to stay dependent on subsidies, the poor have no choice but to be uprooted and put in different housing, not of their choice.
Under this new regulation, Obama is hoping to move 350,000 Section 8 voucher holders – resettling them under the SAFMR program.
The New York Post reports, that under Obama, “the total number of voucher households has grown to more than 2.2 million.”
Cross-posted at Constitution.com