The Austin Chronicle

Housing Advocates Protest Trump's HUD Cuts

A week of action kicked off Saturday

By Joseph Caterine, July 28, 2017, News

A coalition of housing advocates and organizations are taking part in a national week of action this week in protest of the Trump administration's proposed $6.8 billion in cuts to HUD programs nationwide. Austin stands to lose $18 million in funding as a result of the policy change, and it will affect more than just the low-income housing supply – $7 million in Community Development Block Grants, for example, which fund child care, youth programs, and senior services, will also disappear.

The week opened with a Saturday rally at City Hall, where speakers included low-income tenants and City Council Member Jimmy Flannigan, who said that as the only renter on the current Council, he understood how rising rents impact local families on a personal level. According to a 2014 American Community Sur­vey, 48% of Travis County renters spend over 30% of their monthly income on rent, and 23% spend at least half. "It is easy to get distracted by the nonsense coming out of Washington, D.C.," Flannigan said at the rally. "We have to make their phones ring to the point that no other work gets done until this problem gets fixed."

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