Ben Carson testifies on state of housing in US

Channel: Fox Business
Published: 05/21/2019 06:22 PM

US Dept. of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson testifies at House Financial Services Committee Hearing: Housing in America: Oversight of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Economist Mark Fleming was on Fox Business Network this morning to discuss the housing ...

To order, thank you for your patience. Mr. secretary, we were just working out how we are going to proceed today. We have a classified briefing, that's extremely important that will be called about 1:00 1:30 and so we're not sure how long it's going to go. If it goes beyond an hour, we will come back and we will relieve you if you, if you're prepared to go, we will not ask you to stay beyond one h ...
ur if it is over in one hour, we'll come back and we'll continue with the hearing. Otherwise, we will let you know, and you can make a decision. Is that understood by everybody. Thank you very much without objection, the chairsauthorized to declare a recess of the committee at any time. Today'S hearing is entitled housing in america, oversight of the united states, department of housing and urban development, and now recognize myself for four minutes to give an opening statement. Today, this committee convened for hearing to conduct oversight over the united states department of housing and urban development. Our sole witness is dr. benjamin carson that the trump administration's heard secretary, i am very concerned about secretary carson's actions leading hud specifically under his leadership.

Hud has put forth an outrageous plan that would triple rent for the lowest income households and put 1. 7 million americans at risk of eviction and homelessness. At a time we were inthe midst of a national homelessness and housing affordability crisis. His most recent proposed budget would cut hud funding by 18 percent. That budget proposal includes the elimination of new funding for the national housing trust fund and capital magnet fund is such a programs that are in place to increase the supply of affordable housing. As i've said before, what we need is a real investment in affordable housing programs, not senseless budget cuts under secretary carson's leadership. Hud has diminished and compromised fair housing. Protections secretary carson has halted the implementation of huds affirmatively furthering fair housing rule, which is an important rule. Finalized by the obama administration that provides communities with greater clarity on how to helpbreak down residential segregation and barriers to fair housing opportunity. I'M also concerned by the reports about delays in disaster recovery funds, reaching puerto rico and delays in a hud office of the inspector general inquiry into the matter due to a lack of timely cooperation by her. I was also very troubled by secretary carson's recent cruel proposal to terminate housing benefits for families that include individuals with mixed immigration. Statuses.

Of course, existing law prevents federal housing programs from subsidizing individuals within eligible immigration status. Prorated rental assistance allows mixed immigration status, families to remain together, while exclusively subsidizing only those family members with eligible status. The trump administration proposal puts mixed-status families at risk of being evictedseparated and left homeless secretary carson across the board. These actions are inconsistent with huds mission. Instead of helping the hardworking americans and vulnerable families that agency is in place to serve the trump administration is actively causing harm, striving to make housing less available, affordable and fair. Today, you will face some tough questions about your leadership decisions and mismanagement of the agency. The chair now recognizes the ranking member of the committee, the gentleman from north carolina mr. mchenry for five minutes for an opening statement. Thank you, chairwoman, waters secretary carson, thank you for your service and to the american people and in our government, and so hud was created. More than 50 years ago by presidentlyndon johnson, who intended the new agency to be a major tool in combating poverty, rebuilding our cities and making housing more affordable for all to that end, hud is involved in several programs, including federal public and indian housing efforts, community planning And development initiatives, fair housing and equal opportunity enforcement, fha mortgage insurance, ginnie mae securitization of federally guaranteed mortgages and more recently, disaster recovery efforts. Yet hud also finds itself at a crossroads. It must meet the 21st century expectations the american people in a 20th century framework with 19th century technology.

This is not a recipe for success. Instead of looking for easy answers to complex problems, secretary carson did what dr. carson has done countlesstimes before, while he was a surgeon he rolled up his sleeves and set to work to find things, no matter how big the challenge and there have been challenges he has Implemented reforms to reduce fraud and abuse and how we financed mortgages through fha and ginnie mae. He reversed a decade-long trend by once again hiring a chief financial officer for hud to protect taxpayers and combat wasteful spending. Hud also stood up for housing when it filed suit. In 2018, against the new york city, housing authority for routinely and flagrantly failing to uphold its legal obligations under the fair housing act of 1937 until hud stepped in the new york city, housing authority put real peoplein harm's way, serious harm's way and then repeatedly misled hud About its wrongdoings, he also took the fight against housing discrimination into the 21st century by scrutinizing digital ads that may have violated the fair housing act and were modern-day efforts at redlining. Additionally, secretary carson has worked to promote the public-private partnership model of advancing social and economic prosperity for all americans by chairing the interagency, whitehouse opportunity and revitalization council, which works to help distressed communities, stimulate development and entrepreneurship through new tools like opportunity zones. Opportunity zones are a welcome addition in our tax code and are having an impact in our communities, but we'll have a much stronger impact in the coming decades. I applaudsecretary carson for his efforts to bring much d reform to the agency, including modern errs, modernizing old programs violating updating regulation knocking down barriers to individual local investment as well. Last week i sent a letter to secretary carson urging a swift movement on several pending regulations. Finalizing new rules that reflect modern realities on topics like a firmly furthering fair housing and disparate impact will go a long way to helping local communities and consumers. I welcome you finalizing those rules in a timely manner.

The path to reform isn't always smooth. I think there are reasonable questions regarding how hud communicates information and how it handled the unprecedented amount of disaster aid it administers. I look forwardto hearing the secretary's response to those questions. In particular, like many other federal programs, you must recognize that housing in the 21st century is a partnership between federal state and local governments, one that needs to be collaborative for it to be successful. We must do our part to achieve bipartisan results to help those that are homeless, get in sustainable housing. We must do our part to modernize the federal footprint with changes in law and the the executive branch must do its part in changes to regulation to meet these challenges. As secretary carson has said, we must leverage outside public and private investment, in addition to federal funds. To meet our housing challenges, i concur andi expect to modernize hud to lead the way towards the future, and with that i yield back the balance of my time. Thank you. The chair now recognizes the chair of the subcommittee on housing, community development inch and insurance. Mr. clay for one minute, thank you, madam chair, and, as we marked the the 51 year passage of the fair housing act, there's still much work to be done to promote an issue of fair housing in america.

In fact, as are noted in a recent conversations residents in my district and the community of well-stirred, missouri are facing the prospect of dislocation and up evil. Though we have had conversations, i want to make it clear, forthe record that i fully expect to follow through any and all commitments made and work with my staff and me to ensure that the residents have access to affordable housing, and i hope that we can find A solution such as a grand family, development or usage of section 202 housing and our stand at the ready to work with would and with that. Madam chair, i yield back. Thank you. I want to welcome to the committee our witness dr. , benjamin s, carson senior, the secretary of housing and urban development is served in his current position since 2017. Mr. carson has testified before the committee on previous occasions and i do not believe he needs further introductionwithout objection. Your written statement will be made a part of the record secretary carson. You are now recognized for five minutes to present your oral testimony, ranking member mchenry and members of the committee. Thank you for the opportunity to appear before you today to discuss housing in america. Let me begin with fair housing in so many ways.

We can't consider our housing markets healthy unless those markets are also fair in today's interconnected electronic world, discrimination can take less obvious forms. That'S why i initiated an investigation into facebook and two months ago, charged facebook with violating the fair housing act by using its social media platform to encourage and able and cause housing discrimination using acomputer to limit a person's housing choices is just as discriminatory as slamming a Door in someone's face this year. Hud is also placing a special focus on protecting the rights of individuals to feel safe and secure in their homes, free from sexual harassment. Turning to housing, finance, hud oversees one point: four trillion dollars in federal housing, administration, mortgage insurance and more than 2 trillion in ginnie mae mortgage-backed securities, considering huds critical role in supporting, affordable and sustainable mortgage finance, it is essential that housing, finance reform efforts take a comprehensive View of the marketplace. President trump recently signed a memorandum directing secretary minuchin and myself to develop a housing finance reform plan. Our plan will ensurethat fha and jenny may assume primary responsibility for providing housing, finance, support to low and moderate income families that cannot be fulfilled through traditional underwriting and some of our housing markets, we're also struggling against the strong headwinds of disaster. In the time i've been secretary at hud, this nation has experienced several major disasters. In response. President trump has signed into law, critical emergency funding, to support long-term recovery and directed hud to allocate these resources among the hardest hit states, but is fully obligated approximately seven point. Four billion dollars through our cdbg-dr program, this money can be used today to help rebuild homes, restore businesses and repair or replace damaged infrastructure. In addition, we have reviewedand approved state and territorial plan action plans for another ten billion dollars. Recovering from a major disaster is never easy.

I want to assure this many that hood is doing everything we can to help every grantee accelerate the pace of recovery. No discussion of housing would be complete without discussing the absence of housing. Homelessness continues to be a vexing problem in this country, but i'm encouraged to report to you that homelessness is not an intractable problem. As a nation, we've managed to cut veterans homelessness in half since 2010. Homelessness among families with children is down nearly 30 percent, and chronic homelessness is down more than 16 percent. Another area where i believe we can makea difference is ensuring that hud assisted housing is decent, safe and healthy. Shortly after i took office, i ordered a wholesale reexamination of how the department conducts inspections of public housing as well as private housing under section 8 contract and we're moving quickly to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning and hud assisted housing. Regrettably, there is currently no universal federal requirement that carbon monoxide detectors be installed. An all hud assisted housing. That'S wrong, whether through regulation or legislation. It is our intention to require working carbon monoxide detectors in hud, assisted housing, whether state or local law requires it or not, and to assist phas with the purchase and installation of carbon monoxide detectors. Hud is providing fivemillion dollars for this simple life-saving device.

Finally, let me turn to something that is rather obvious to all of us. In many parts of our country there is an affordable housing crisis. The federal government cannot solve this problem alone. Let me tell you about a few things. We are doing at hud to find a solution. To date, our rental assistance demonstration has preserved nearly a hundred and fourteen thousand units of public housing and generated more than seven billion dollars in construction activity to revitalize these units or replace them altogether. We were also very excited at the potential for up to a hundred billion dollars in capital, investment and opera. These zones made possible by thetax reform, spearheaded by president trump. An hood is proposing a new rule to ensure tax payer supported housing support. Those who leap who are legally entitled to them, given the overwhelming demand for our programs, the law requires that we devote ourselves to legal residents who have been waiting some for many years to access, affordable housing. Before i conclude, i want to thank the many members from both parties who have taken time to meet with me during the past two years and who are working everyday to find common ground in support of safe, decent and affordable housing. The work isn't easy, but nothing worthwhile ever is.

Thank you. Thank you very much. I now recognize myselffor five minutes for questions. On april 25th 2018, you unveiled a proposal that would triple rents for the lowest income hud residents. Previously, when you testified before this committee, i explained to you that your proposal, what it would mean for a low-income, hud assistant senior in my district named larry, he would see an increase in his rent of around $ 80 and because he lives on a fixed income Of just 1015 dollars, this would be devastating for him. You demonstrated that you did not fully understand the impact of your proposal when you responded to my question by saying that you did not think it was quote. A typical situation quote unquote, but according to the centeron budget and policy priorities, the average rent increase for seniors under your proposal would be 83 dollars are a 30 % increase dr. carson? We are currently experiencing an affordable housing crisis, but again this year you proposed the same rent increases in huds 2020 budget requests cannot understand why you would make a family choose between eating or staying housed. Do you understand the impacts of your proposal and do you continue to defend it? Well, first of all, thank you for the work of you down on behalf of poor people, our country. As far as our proposal is concerned, we're talking about increasing rent for the people who pay the minimum rent and we've protected the elderlyand, the disabled, hold them completely harmless. In that regard, people who pay 25 to 50 dollars a month have been asked to contribute more in order to help sustain the program and also to encourage them to go out employment. We'Re talking about work, able people we're not talking about people who have to take care of others or have young children talking about people who have perfectly healthy bodies and have secretary, have you determined, but those who you're asking an increase, what their income is and where The money would come from.

Are these people on fixed incomes, some of them? We have made a provision, a hardship provision for anybody who's incapable of doing that. Butthis is what about fixed incomes, people on fixed incomes. Are they asked to increase to pay an increase in rent? We have made provisions for anybody who cannot meet the income that we've asked for, but we've also, this is part of a comprehensive program. The rent proposal is to start the discussion. We need to have a discussion with lawmakers on what to do, because we have so many perverse incentives in place. For instance, you know if you make more money, you have to report that so your rent can go up. That'S a ridiculous thing. Okay! This is the example you gave was a senior not a work able that i gave it was not awork able household and i'm really concerned about that, because people on fixed incomes don't have any money for an increase. They can't afford an increase and i'd like to know exactly what you're doing with people on fixed incomes when we, as i said before, the elderly and the disabled are completely protected and the plan that we've proposed, so they exempt it from any increase. They have no increase exempt it from any increases. I detected them from any anchor. Okay, continue with your explanation and as i was saying, if you make more money, you know you're penalized for that.

If you bring another income producing person into your environment, you're penalized for that, you have toreport that so your rent can be raised, don't even think about getting married. You probably lose all of your subsidies altogether. You know these kinds of things have been in our system for a long time. This is all part of a comprehending other fact. The average rent increase for a household headed by a person with a disability is 26, is a 26 percent increase? Are you saying this? Is incorrect, i'm saying that we have protected the elderly and the disabled from increases. I really don't know what that means. That means they're not going to be increased, but the other thing that i hope you just heard me say this is to start the conversation aboutsomething. That is a chronic persistent problem. We have to come up with better, more efficient ways so that we don't leave people in situations where they become. Thank you, mr. chairman. My time has expired, but we can have a discussion.

All we want about rate increases if they are not affordable if they're seniors. If they're undiscussed does him no good - and i am very concerned about that and with that the gentleman from north carolina ranking member mr. mchenry is recognized for five minutes. Thank you secretary of course, and during your time at hud, you've been willing to take on a few tough fights, and i would i want to speak to the example of thesuit that, under your direction, leadership had filed against the new york city housing authority, which is The largest housing authority in america, it's a largest housing authority, not just need states, but in north america, and your lawsuit was about the deplorable conditions. That of its housing units, and your accusation and huds accusation - was that new york housing authority was in substantial default. Under the 1937 housing act allowing for dangerous high levels of lead, paint, unsanitary conditions, rats, mice, non functioning heat and winter and widespread recurring molds and, in short, things were so bad in so many in new york city housing authority's units that at least 19 children were Found to have elevated blood leadlevels, some residents were sleeping with their gas ovens on for heat and 83 % of inspected units contained a condition that could pose a health hazard to a tenant. This was covered up for years, so bad that the us attorney for the southern district of new york said that their failure to provide decent, safe and sanitary housing is simply unacceptable and illegal. You sued the new york city, housing authority and then, in january of this year they voluntarily entered into a consent decree with hud. So can you walk us through that? And the steps are being taken going forward? Yes, well, we can keep children and those that are in these units. Safe and healthy yeswe were very concerned, particularly about the lead situation and a number of children who have been affected. You know lead poisoning for a child is devastating not only acutely, but it has a lifelong impact and not only does it decrease their abilities, but it's very costly to society in terms of their potential. But in the case of nycha, the new york city, housing authority, they had been prevaricating about what they were doing during their inspections, covering it up completely.

In addition to that, allowing mold to fester, which was causing a lot of problems with asthma, which has a very substantial medical cost to it as well, not having up protected barriers where they need tobe trip hazards, elevators that want working, i mean it was a total Disaster and in situations like that in the past you know, hud has frequently taken places into receivership. I'Ve not taken any place into receivership since i've been here because in looking over the history of that, it's not turned out, particularly well in all cases and decided that we really would work with the city. The mayor and myself, who come from very different political places, decided we would put aside the political differences and concentrate on the people and what could be done in order to help the people of nycha. We decided to put a monitor in a federal monitor, who has much experiencein that case we put in measurements that have to be met and times when they have to be met, and we are proceeding along that line of ceos in the process of being selected now And we are going to keep a very close eye on it and we are going to hold them to the metrics that have been put in place because again no one deserves to live in that setting. Well, thank you for speaking to the humanity involved, not the physical, the physical structures, but actually speaking of the people that that inhabit these these places and their that they deserve to live in a healthy, safe place. I want to raise opportunity zones. Thati know. Other people have questions about opportunity zones and your leadership on the white house opportunity. Revitalization, council, but my time is cut short. I thank you for your testimony. Thanks for your leadership and service to our country, i yield back. Thank you.

The gentlewoman from new york, mrs. maloney, who is also the chair for the subcommittee on investigations, entrepreneurship in capital markets, is recognized for five minutes. Thank you, madam chair. Mr. secretary, the d in hud does not stand for deportation. I'M afraid that a recent proposal of yours will bring nothing but despair to thousands of american families by throwing children out of their homes simply put. We cannot create affordable housing for americansby, throwing other americans out into the street with no place to go. I am very proud to represent queensbridge houses, which is the largest public housing complex in the entire country, along with many other public housing prop complexes, so i've been working with public housing, tenants since 1981, standing up for tenants rights, fighting against spending cuts and exposing and Ending corrupt mob contracts, but your plan to create vacancies by making 55,000 american children homeless is among the most damaging proposals i have ever seen in public policy and, quite frankly, i find it despicable. You know that the current laws already prohibit federal housing programs from subsidizing undocumented immigrants. Individuals who are not eligible for housingassistance do not receive subsidies by evicting, mixed-status households. You will rip apart families and be throwing children on to the street, and where will the 55,000 children go? Where will they live? What agency will care for their health and education? Is your plan to have ice put 55,000 more children on cage on the border? Really? Not in my district and not on my watch, this is a horrible plan. New york city now spends more than 600 million per year to support 8200 children in foster care and 4.

5 billion more every year to tackle homelessness. Have you considered how you would support the newly homeless families and children? Will they be going to foster care what'syour plan? Well, first of all, thank you for the work that you've done on behalf of the people and i appreciated at our visit in new york. You know, as far as what we're doing with housing the law that has been provided through congress states, very specifically, that the secretary of hud may not provide housing assistance to people who are here illegally. It also states specifically that the secretary has the duty to end assistance if he finds that someone is violating that, so we are following the law. I would also point out to you, but but may i respond, but by law we already. I agree with you: you don't provide subsidies to people whoare here illegally, but these children were born here in america and even if their families are illegal, it's a mixed of family in terms of legality, the children are legal, so you could have a situation where the Parents are deported and the children they leave the children here american citizens and who is going to take care of these children. Do you have a plan to take care of these 55,000 children, which is huds number that came forward with that they project could be hurt by this plan? Do you have a plan for how to take care of these children? Yes or no? A couple of things here: first of all, there are hundreds of thousandsof children, as well as elderly and disabled people, on the waiting list who are illegal american citizens. But mr. secretary, these children are legal american citizens. They were born in america. They are legal citizens, as, as i was saying there are hundreds of thousands, if not millions who are waiting on the list. Do you suggest that we prioritize people american citizen over another again and if children are american citizens, they are legal.

And what is your plan to take care of them? If you read the rule carefully, you will see that it provides a six-month deferral on request if they have not come found, another place to live, and that can be renewed, two timesfor a total of 18 months, which is plenty of time for congress to engage and Comprehensive immigration reform so that this becomes a moot point, as does the daca situation and a hundred other things. How in the world, can you put forward a plan that could a gentlelady's time has been homeless? The gentlewoman from missouri miss wagner is recognized for five minutes. I thank the chairwoman i think secretary carson, for his testimony today and for his service. Would you like a minute, sir, any more time to respond yeah. Thank you very much. The fact of the matter is, congress has responsibility for making the laws that govern this and they have the ability to changethat and if, in fact, you want to explain to the american citizens have been on the wait list for several years in your district in new York why we should continue to support families that are not here legally. I would be happy to join you and and helping explain that to them. Thank you and i'm glad you could just finish your answer. Congressman al green and i have written and worked on legislation that addresses major challenges facing the disaster relief funding process at hud. According to numerous ig reports and a hearing that the financial services oversight and investigations committee held in march, major issues have been identified with the community development block grant disaster recoveryprogram. Some of the difficulties identified are the potential duplication of benefits, slow disbursement of disaster, related funding and delays in funding for low and moderate income citizens. While hud has become a primary provider of disaster recovery, this program is not codified in statute.

Hud uses more than 60 60 federal register notices to issue clarifying guidance, waivers and alternative requirements to oversee at least 113 active disaster recovery grants which totaled more than 47 billion dollars as of last year. Codifying the cdbg-dr program would provide a framework for future disasters, reduce the over reliance on federal register notices for each disaster and speed delivery of disaster assistance to grantees and disaster victims. Codification provides proper controls, thatprotect against waste fraud and abuse. Mr. secretary, are you aware of these challenges within the cdbg-dr program and how are you making sure these funds are directed towards the americans who need it the most? Thank you very much for that question and for the visits that we've had to discuss this and other matters. I actually very much agree with the whole concept of appropriate codification. You and congressman greene have been working on this. I know with some others and the big advantage, of course, is you know you start out on second base in starting out from home, and you know there are a lot of things that are done consistently. All the time and youcan get those things codified and done quickly, so that you can decrease the amount of time, i'm in agreement with that and we're very happy to work with you already making some progress in that area. And i think we can do this, because one of the things that has concerned me is the amount of time it takes to get grants out right and i've asked every office at hud to look at their own internal procedures and see what they can do to Speed it up, if you have ten offices and nine of them get things done quickly and one of them takes six months. The whole thing takes much: there's got to be coordination, betweenhud, sba, fema, state agencies all talking to each other to make sure there's a procurement issues. I so look forward to working and continue my work with congressman green to to bring this to the to the floor.

So i thank you for your support and for your commitment to this quickly. Moving on the world's largest catholic health care system, ascension is headquartered in st. louis region. Ascension is implementing a comprehensive organizational response to trafficking survivors as its hospitals at its hospitals. Unfortunately, ascension can only establish these programs where emergency housing is available. I understand that the continuum of care, fy 18 competition focus included 50 million dollars for housing. Services for domestic violence and traffickingsurvivors will hud, extend this program and ensure that projects, including housing for trafficking survivors, are or are there more permanent ways that hud can address transitional housing needs for trafficking survivors, sir. Well, you know trafficking is obviously a horrendous and there's a lot more of it going on these days, and we definitely need to take care of that, and that was a very good program. It turns out that you all have fun that that for the 19 season, so yes, it will be continued. Wonderful, i'm glad to hear that my time is expired. I yield back. Thank you very much.

The gentlewoman from new york velasquez is recognized for five minutes. Thank you, madam chairsecretary. Carson defending hots recently proposed immigration rule. You release the following statement. There is an affordable housing crisis in this country and we need to make certain our scarce public resources help those who are legally entitled to it secretary. Do you know how many people are in the waiting list for public housing and section 8 vouchers in your district? You may know no nationwide. There are hundreds of thousands know. There are 4. 4 million people by the way. So do you know how many units would open up as a result of the proposed rule, how many units at least 30 2030 25 to 35 units? So you are going to put children on the streets toopen up 25 to 35 thousand units, and these are american children. Where are they gon na go? They will go into the shelter system, they will become homeless children. Those are american children.

So the question is not: where are they gon na go? The question to you, sir, is why, if you recognize that there is a housing crisis in our nation that there are 4. 4 million people in a waiting list, why you are not asking, or why did you request nine point, six billion dollars less for hurts budget for Fiscal year 2020, including zeroing out the capital fund and requesting 350 million dollars less for the section 8 program. Do you understand why this sounds like you'retalking from both sides of your mouth? You know your regional director in new york, a slim patent, has been spending night living in public housing. But apparently she forgot to talk to you, because this budget request doesn't reconcile what she's seen on the ground. And i found that hypocritical that people come here and talk about the situation of public housing in new york. And you have not been here when we have been advocating for increasing the capital fund so that we could make repairs and we can address the issue of mold. In fact, when you went to the hearings confirmation hearings in the senate side, you said that as a doctor, you will want totake care of the children in public housing, the health of children in public housing. Sir, this budget is changeful, it is immoral. It fails. American citizens, just for the sake of scoring political points, so did you have any conversations about this proposed rule with the staff at the white house, including senior adviser, stephen miller, or acting white house chief of staff? Mick mulvaney did you. We have conversations all the time about many of our policies and did you consult with any national, affordable housing organizations, tenem rights or immigration groups? We have conversations with such groups. All the time did you have conversation with the largest new york city, public housing authority in the nation.

Newyork did you, i think what is important is what are we going to do about the problem that it's, so that would make a lot more sense. We claim in my time you know, don't sit there, sir, and say about a national conversation. We need to have a national conversation about homelessness in our nation, about the disrepair of public housing in our nation. You know what it takes. It takes money. It takes the budget. You have created this crisis by the disinvestment that have taken place in public housing in our nation. We have a very substantial, affordable housing crisis and you there are two ways to approach: it continue to throw money at it. Whichhas been done for a long time without solving the problem or ask yourself: why do you have that problem of escalating crisis? I can say more about that. Are you back the balance of my time? The gentleman from florida, mr. posey, is recognized for five minutes now. Thank you, madam sheriff.

Mr. secretary, they continue to ask you questions and not allow you time to answer them. I mean that's. You know, that's pretty selfish, pretty bad behavior. So if you want any time to answer anything, you just give me a thumbs up and our yields. Thank you. I appreciate that. I mean it does seem a little silly to have a hearing. Oh, you asked comeon a question and you can't answer. It seems like more platform. Any rate know you've called me selfish. I yield yes by fighting here for children in america.

I'M sure order please. Mr. posey, now in terms of affordable housing crisis, we have to ask ourselves: why is there a fordable housing crisis in a country like ours? There are so many regulatory issues and zoning restrictions that add to the cost for a new construction single-family home there we're talking 25 to 27 percent or multifamily construction, we're talking 32. 1 % up to 42 percent and a quarter of cases. Unless we begin to tackle the things that are driving these prices, we're just chasing our tails by justsaying, we got to throw more money at it. We have to analyze these things carefully if to use our brains. We have to think logically, rather than just emotionally, if we're going to solve these problems and they can't be solved if we work together rather than making everything to a political platform and trying to score points. Uh well stated mr. secretary and i'm saddened to to see you come here only to be bullied in and berated for not breaking the law actually, and i and i don't know if they were suggesting that you should separate these children from their families as a way To comply, i don't know if that's their suggestion, but it's offthe wall thinking and - and i respect you for following the law. All of us here should be impressed that huds 2020 budget request continues the federal goal to prevent and end homelessness by sinking nearly 2. 6 billion dollars to support thousands of local housing and and service programs assisting the homeless. And while you know a lot of the people up here, do a lot of talking you've actually been doing a lot of work and you've actually been accomplishing things, and - and i want you to know that a lot of people do recognize that and appreciate it.

Your list of accomplishments is extraordinary, just like the track record of your personal life and we're pleased that youhave chosen to to dedicate your clearly superior, intellect and desire to help other people in a position that you are. I i i just can't imagine that you're willing to put yourself and your family through this, but we're so grateful that you are willing to do that. Thank you. Mr. secretary, i've been a vocal supporter of easing restrictions on fha loans for condominiums written you a letter before with mr. cleaver from the other side. Could you give us an update on where that is yeah? The condominium issue is a sticky issues very complex, fraught with risk and we've been doing a very in-depth analysis. Working with it have submitted new rules for it that hasgone over to omb, and we expect to have the final rules on condominiums out by this fall. Oh that's great. Thank you, sir also. We recently discussed your recent proposed rule issued under section three of the hood actives of 68. Just wonder if you could share with us the important and privileged you've made it yes, section three is an extremely important part of the housing act, because it requires that, if you're getting hud money that you have to hire trained or give contracts to the low-income people In the area it's been largely ignored because it's so encumbered with regulatory requirements that nobody wants to use it.

So we've done an in-depth analysis of it. Removeda lot of those encumbrances added incentives and the new rules for section three will be coming out this summer. Excellent. Well again, my time is about to expire mr. secretary, but i would give want to thank you for your service and and express that i'm embarrassed by the way you're treating this committee. Thank you back. Thank you very much. Let me remind you. Members will refrain from impugning the personal motives of other members. The gentleman from california mr. sherman is recognized for five minutes. Madam chairman, the member controls.

There are five minutes: the witness controls, the five minute opening statement and many of our witnesses have a outstanding, bully pulpit outside this room to thenturn and say to members they don't control. Even their five minutes is a denigration of our role as members of this committee. As to affordable housing, the witness does point out that there are barriers to the creation of more rental units and we need many, many hundreds of thousands built. We need to keep interest rates. Low zoning in most cities makes it impossible to build rental housing in neighborhoods, where people are not poor and we can say, we don't discriminate against poor people. We just discriminate against people who don't want to live six families to the acre or four families to the acre. You cannot build affordable rental housing. Six families to the acre andwe also have the fiscalization of land-use planning, where cities are financed often based on the money. They can get from commercial development and they fight in my state over who can prevent housing from being built on certain event empty acreage. If they can only get an auto dealer there, they get the sales tax. So the fiscalization of land-use planning also keeps cities from allowing rental housing to be built. I know miss maloney is not here but secretary.

I want to thank you, if force being, perhaps the only person in your administration to support comprehensive immigration, reform and reform which would have provided and which would provide legal status for the families that mrs. maloney fromnew york is concerned about as to more somewhat more mundane Matters, the fha has specific mortgage requirements, some of which are servicing requirements, i'm talking about mortgage servicing, some of which are antiquated in your ongoing efforts to make the fha program more attractive to lenders. What is hud doing to better align fha servicing requirements to those of gses? Well, one of one of the things that we're doing is working with the justice department on the false claims act which has driven away. You know quite a few of the lenders who are concerned about non-material mistakes and the consequences for them, and that will open up a lot more borrowing options for people. Do you seea need for legislation for us to somewhat correct the false claims act, or can this be done administratively we're going to try to do it at the administrative level, but appreciate the implication that you would help us if legislation is needed? Okay, the rental assistance demonstration program focuses on public housing. The third the program allows public authorities to convert housing properties at risk of obsolescence into project-based vouchers under section eight, are you familiar with the rad program and do you think it's effective, i'm very familiar with it? It'S a spectacular program already, you know: we've been able to convert well over a hundred thousand units contribute seven billion dollars toward capital needs. It'S one ofthe most spectacular programs and one of the things that would help us tremendously legislatively is to lift the cap on rad right now. It'S at four hundred and fifty five thousand units, but there are so many places across the country that are requesting it and there's absolutely no reason that it shouldn't be lifted. It'S already been demonstrated to be extremely effective. Thank you, and - and we should look at that now - the fha is concerned about people having down payments and some get assistance from their families. Some get assistance from government entities and the differentiation in in default rates is like 0. 2 % between whether you get aid from the government, a government entity or a familyand, yet you're being pretty restrictive on the government entity aid, and this particularly affects some indian tribes, who Are being told that they can only make loans or provide rental assistance in a known geographic area, which could be a small reservation? Can you look at this? Yes, we we are in the process of looking at that.

As you know, there's been a 90 day liam delay on that, and we are in fact looking at it, but it's also in litigation not really free to talk too much about it. Thank you very much. The gentleman from missouri mr. luetkemeyer is recognized five minutes. Thank you, madam chair, i'm over here. Mr. garcin. Thank you dr. carson, dr. carson, one area. This committee is examined at length. This congress is a lack of affordable housing in this country.

A main cause for the shortage of affordable housing is the regulatory burdens that increase the cost of the mortgage, which you've described a minute ago. Actually, four, sometimes 2032 to forty percent. One impending rule hud should be forced should be focused on affects the affordability of housing. Is the impending current expected credit loss, accounting, standard or cecil? This accounting standard requires banks to incur the full loss of a loan at the moment is originated. I'Ve heard concerns about cso from numerous industries, including community and regional banks, credit unions, realtors and home builders. Manyof. These concerns them around housing, affordability, according to the national association of homebuilders, who have testified in this committee twice over the last four or five months that increase in the cost of a house by $ 1,000 prices, a hundred thousand people out of a home. My question to you this morning is: have you looked at the effects of cecil what they could have on the ability of someone to afford a home? Yes, we have. You know it is difficult when you're trying to project out into the future risk - and we were in the process of studying that very carefully. You don't want to make a mistake on that. Are you coming up with a studyon the effect of the individuals? The number of folks, and, in fact, on your your look you're having to reserve and what the kind of reaction you'd have to come up with to be able to increase those reserves. All of those parameters are being looked at.

So if you have to increase your reserves, what is the source of income for you? Excuse me, i say if you have to increase your reserves, what is a source of income by which you would be able to do that? Where would the money come from from which would be able to do that right, not to have to increase your bail, your guarantee fees? Perhaps that is one suggestionokay. If that happens, that increases the cost of a loan which home builders say, keeps people from having access to loan right. So you know you have to look at all the possible sources and model it out to see what the long-term effect is. Now this is gon na affect the gses as well. If you've been looking at that effect, if you talk to freddie and fannie, you see once how this is going to impact them any sort of coordination. With all of you all these other government agencies that may or may not in fact well, you know we do talk about that. I will be at a fhfa meeting this afternoon. Actually, i'm sure thattopic will come up interesting. So are they monitoring this? Are you aware of it? Are they are you i'm sorry, are you are they monitoring? Are you aware, if they're monitoring this at all or coming up with studies, to look at the costs that they may incur, what you're going to have to have to do to what they may do to react to this? I'M not i'm not sure what you mean. Okay, well i mean our and your communications with them. Are they looking at how to how to increase the reserves? Are they going to borrow money for the treasuries you're gon na in peace again and create increasing guarantee fees, or you discussed it atall with them, or is that part of the meeting this afternoon that they are looking at? How do they backstop themselves right right now? You know in conservatorship they don't have to worry about that if they come out of conservatorship. That becomes a very different question about where that money comes from, and there are multiple discussions about where it would come from.

Okay, one of the questions that you were talking while ago with regards to the cost drivers for affordable housing - and you know i guess my question to you - is how much authority do you have at hud if any with ability to waive certain rules or regulations or Chainsaw rule regulations are suspend certainrules right, i said: is there a certain rule of regulations? You have the ability to do that with or your hands pretty well tied and congress has to be the one to change the way that this all works. The vast majority of regulations are done at a local level, so we can't change those. What we can do is try to incentivize people at the local level to begin to look at some of these rules and to address them and they get preference points when they do that, and a lot of people are actually starting to realize that, and do that, A lot of these regulations have been on the books for 10, 20, 50 ahundred years have nothing to do with. What'S going on now, you know the density requirements frequently don't take into account some of the new martin building techniques, and you know, as far as the whole four debilitate issue is concerned, in a in addition to financial issues, we have to look at modern technologies that Have come to the fore and - and i can continue that at some point my time is expired. Thank you very much for service, sir. The gentleman from missouri mr. clay, there's also the chair for the subcommittee on housing, community development and insurance is recognized for five minutes. Thank you, madam chair and mr. secretary. Let'S discuss the wellston missouri housing authority, andand, which the which hud has had in receivership for the last 22 years and as you are aware, there is a planned demolition of a number of units which will displace tenants, uproot lives and cause utter confusion in those lives. Children will be forced to change. Schools in some parents will have drastic changes to their life and work schedules.

As you know, we are looking at several options which we have discussed, including the grant, grand families concept and section 202 housing. Could you please walk us through a displacement such as this and tell us what does hurt do to serve the affordable housing needs of these residents and ensure that they have access to saveaffordable a minor, modern housing? Alright. Well. Thank you for that question and thank you for the times that we've had a chance to discuss this and a visit in your district, where the people seem to like you very much. You know certainly we're very concerned about anytime people have to be displaced, which is why we have tenant protection vouchers. Not only do we provide those, but we provide relocation services to help those individuals to be able to adjust, and in some cases you know they end up finding places that they they like considerably better and they don't even want to come back after. The problem has been rectified, but we do want to give themthose choices. We also have been working very vigorously with the housing choice vouchers to make them more palpable, because there are many places where landlords won't accept them, and we've done some studies to find out why they won't accept them. Some of them are really quite interesting, for instance, in san diego, there was great resistance and then the city guaranteed all the landlords that they would repair any damage.

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