Candlelight vigil held for residents of New Albany public housing fearful of demolition
Several dozen people gathered in front of the city-county building in New Albany on Monday night to oppose the city's plan and demand more details about what's next.
Several dozen people gathered in front of the city-county building in New Albany on Monday night to oppose the city's plan to demolish public housing units and demand more details about what's next.
The group "We Are New Albany" is against the city's plan to overhaul the New Albany Housing Authority, which involves the demolition of units.
"If we don't stand together as a community, our community is doing to fail, and we can't let that happen," one resident said.
Residents in attendance said they live in fear about where to go next.
"They're spraying perfume in our face, but really it ain't nothing but a dog turd," Alissa Baumgardner said.
The city said units are in disrepair with mold and leaky roofs.
"They say there's a plan, but a plan on paper won't keep people dry and warm and safe," said Rep. Ed Clere, (R) District 72.
Last week, the housing authority passed a resolution that says, in part:
- "False information circulated has led NAHA residents to believe they may be evicted or forced from their homes."
- "Federal regulations require NAHA, prior to any demolition, to have a relocation plan in place."
- "No current resident will be made homeless."
Mayor Jeff Gahan said the city has a 10-year plan to improve the city's public housing and released this statement:
"We will continue to work to improve the living conditions of every resident of the New Albany Housing Authority, and no one will be left homeless."
"If they're concerned about false rumors, and they're concerned that the people are scared, and they want to put everybody at rest so they can enjoy their Christmas, why won't they show us a plan?" Candace Brewer asked.
Right now, the city is getting numbers on vacant homes and properties for housing vouchers. HUD must first approve a final plan before it can pass.
For updates on the city's plan, click here.
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