Today, Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA), Chairwoman of the House Financial Services Committee, made the following statement on the impact of the Trump shutdown on the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the agency that is responsible for expanding housing opportunities and providing safe, decent, and affordable housing for millions of families across the country:
“Today marks the 20th day of the second longest government shutdown in U.S. history. It is shameful that President Trump and Congressional Republicans are so desperate to secure taxpayer funding for a senseless border wall that they’re willing to leave American families with uncertainty and instability, as an estimated 400,000 federal employees are still furloughed and another 420,000 are working without pay.
“Additionally, 95% of Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) employees have been furloughed.
“Millions of families that rely on HUD’s rental assistance programs are dangerously close to losing their homes due to projected lapses in funding. What’s more, it has been recently reported that HUD, under Secretary Carson’s leadership, has failed to follow its own contingency plan, allowing 1,150 project-based rental assistance contracts to expire with hundreds more hanging in the balance if this shutdown isn’t resolved.
“Families aspiring to become homeowners may see their Federal Housing Administration (FHA) or rural housing loans delayed or be unable to close on their loans altogether during the shutdown. In rural communities, very low-income, elderly homeowners who rely on HUD grants and loans to address health and safety hazards may not receive payments and be forced to live in dangerous conditions.
“There are also critical offices at HUD that are now severely understaffed, like the Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity (FHEO). As a result, a backlog of over 600 fair housing complaints that have been filed with HUD’s fair housing office is being exacerbated.
“These are just a few examples of the harm being caused by the third shutdown this nation has experienced since Trump took office and I continue to call on Republicans to protect the livelihoods of hardworking Americans by ending this shutdown immediately.”