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Democrats fight back against HUD plan to increase rent for people receiving housing assistance

Rep. Maxine Waters introduces new resolution to undo proposed changes

Democrats are fighting back against a recent proposal from Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson to increase the rent on certain people receiving federal housing subsidies.

Last month, HUD and Carson announced a proposal to increase rent burdens of public housing by as much as three times. The plan also prevents any income deductions that could possibly help lower rent rates.

Now, Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., the ranking member on the House Financial Services Committee, is introducing a resolution that affirms the Brooke Rule, which ensures that families receiving federal housing assistance do not pay more than 30% of their adjusted income on rent. Under HUD’s proposal, that amount would increase to 35% of their net income.

Waters believes this change could possibly put 1.7 million Americans at risk of homelessness.

“Despite the current law, Secretary Carson has once again demonstrated his complete ignorance when it comes to poverty and housing," Waters said in a statement. “His proposal to dramatically raise rents on low-income families, including those who are elderly or disabled, is deeply cruel.”

Carson aims to revamp the archaic system and believes it will encourage public housing tenants to seek better paying jobs, but Waters thinks otherwise.

“There is simply no evidence to support his claim that his proposal will increase self-sufficiency," Waters said. "Instead, this proposal would put millions of low-income families at risk of financial hardship, eviction, and homelessness. I am committed to fighting against any efforts to raise rents on Americans who are already struggling to make ends meet."

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