16
Mar
08

132. Cities Losing Taxpayers to Homelessness

foreclosure.jpg 

Dear Friends and Wanderingvets:

In listening to the news about foreclosures being at its all time worst for the last 26 months, I have been wondering: Where all these homeowners have been going?

I have been reading about some creative homeless guys in Cleveland, Ohio who have been living in foreclosed homes that still have the power and water turned on. Does that make them homeless still? 

Anyhow, I came across some contradictory statements from Cynthia McCollum, president of the National League of Cities. Her statements in fact are very contradictory to those of HUD Secretary Alphonso Jackson and his 2007 Annual Homeless Assessment Report stating that homelessness remained level over the past year, as well as what VA Secretary James Peake could possibly be saying about having reduced Veteran Homelessness in this nation. The National League of Cities also conducted a survey that is more believable, as well, to the current foreclosure crisis of the last couple of years.Interestingly enough, McCollum states:

“Cities are already seeing reductions in

their revenues at the same time that more services are needed to address

the many related problems caused by the foreclosures. Unfortunately we also

know that the problems will continue for many years before they get better.

That’s a tough situation for all of us.”

The results of an online/email poll represent responses from leaders of more than 200 cities. Of particular note is the ripple effect the housing crisis seems to be having on city finances. One out of three report that funding for programs and projects has declined in the past year.

Of course, the majority of the impact, as always, is on the lower income 51%, which includes the majority of the military, both active duty and veterans, as well as seniors and single parent (one income) families.

I guess the other 49% were upper-middle and higher income that hit a bump in the road and just happened to lose a house.

The National League of Cities is screaming about their losing property taxpayers as a means of maintaining their city revenues. The one thing about losing their tax base, though, is that now that they are feeling the pinch, they are also being brutally honest on what they are now paying for.

Here are some interesting survey results from the cities:

  • Increase in foreclosures 62%
  • Increase in need for temporary assistance, other than housing 53%
  • Decrease in funding for other programs and projects 35%
  • Decrease in city revenues and/or revenue estimates 33%
  • Increase in predatory lending practices 23%
  • Increase in homelessness/need for temporary/emergency housing 22%

(Gee, this is a big difference than what HUD reports)

Now when asked, the following question:

“What groups/organizations has your city been working with most closely

in responding to this crisis?”

The results were:

  • 59% Non-profit/civic organizations
  • 29% Churches

Meaning, 88% of the assistance is coming from nonprofits, charities and churches.

Other than trying to drive their former taxpayers out of town as the new homeless, where is the help coming from to aid this problem besides the organizations that have always been working with the homeless? This seems to be an issue that is ongoing, and even Cynthia fails to state what action if any, cities are taking to assist in this crisis.

Wanderingvet

Data for this article came from: http://www.prnewswire.com/cgi-bin/stories.pl?ACCT=104&STORY=/www/story/03-11-2008/0004771702&EDATE=

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1 Response to “132. Cities Losing Taxpayers to Homelessness”


  1. March 16, 2008 at 11:38 pm

    Isn’t amazing how the number of foreclosures this year is more than twice that of last year, and yet all of those former homeowners haven’t caused the numbers of homeless to increase (at least according to HUD)?

    If HUD managed the current economic situation the way they are handling the counting of homeless in our nation; we’d all be billionaires.

    By the way…

    Here is the web address for the Nat’l League of Cities:

    http://www.nlc.org/


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