How the GOP-led Arizona Legislature could kill Arizona’s public housing program
AZ – The Arizona Legislature is set to vote on an amendment that would abolish the state’s public-housing program and leave the state with only 2,700 public housing units available to households earning less than 125 percent of the federal poverty level.
The measure passed the House by a 21-12 vote Monday.
It now heads to the Senate.
The amendment is sponsored by Sen. Michele Reagan, D-Phoenix, and Rep. Scott Wilson, D, Chandler.
It is currently being drafted by Senate Republican leader Dan Patrick, R-Fort Smith.
Public housing is a government-funded program designed to provide low-income people with housing, food and other assistance.
It was established in the 1970s to provide housing for low-wage workers who otherwise would have been evicted from their homes and thrown into the streets.
Arizona’s public safety housing, or “housing for the homeless,” was created in 2000.
In 2012, the Legislature authorized $20 million to expand public safety and supportive housing.
Public Safety Housing, also known as HOME, provides supportive housing to people living in shelters, transitional housing for the elderly, and other vulnerable people.
Public safety housing was created to address the state of the homeless population in Phoenix, where more than 2,200 people are homeless.
The Arizona Republican Party has been a vocal opponent of the program and has been at odds with the federal government on issues such as how to fund public safety.
Republican Sen. Scott Miller, who represents the Phoenix metro area, was the sponsor of the amendment to the bill.
“Public safety was designed for the middle class and middle class people who are able to stay in public housing and get jobs,” Miller said.
“Now, the Republicans want to eliminate that.”
The House approved the measure in February.