Monday, February 27, 2017

Misled Opportunity

I'm just passing this information along...Pardon the typos...

The Opportunity Fund is tax money intended for infrastructure improvements.  The Op Fund board recently recommended a $900,200 grant to the Peninsula Housing Authority to fund the destruction of 33 homes now sitting on land where the housing authority wants to build a new high-rise apartment complex for low income residents.

The Op Fund board described it as  "site development."  The county administrator admitted it was for the removal of these perfectly good homes.

Now, on the official Agenda for Tuesday's (February 28th) County Commission meeting, it has morphed into a grant to "build a Boys and Girls Club.

This type disinformation is or should be criminal.  In any case it is certainly misleading to the general public.

I hope we can get a flash-mob to appear at Tuesday's meeting and protest the destruction of these 33 homes and secondly to protest this kind of subterfuge employed by our county government.

If you cannot make the meeting please email your county commissioner and register your displeasure with this outright lying to the public.
The housing authority has plans to LEASE space in their high-rise to the Boys and Girls club but this grant is not going to that purpose.

Please let these commissioners know it is NOT alright to lie to taxpayers.


  1. I have to respectfully disagree. Those old projects are only one of the numerous low income, subsidized housing units in Port Angeles. There are two developments along 18th street, an apartment building off Lincoln downtown, and old apartment building on Laurel, an apartment building by second and Peabody, The Highland Court apartments on the east side, the Lee Hotel downtown and the buildings on the opposite corner from Swain's to name a few. Also, many of the old "motels" in town stockpile these folks also.
    I am NOT a supporter of Our Town, nor do I condone harassment of people because of their economic situation, but they too have a legitimate concern. It is true that many of these people are bums, but the converse is also true. These bums are people, who need to live the best way they can. Port-O-=Calls points out that many of the folks being harassed are not outsiders. They grew up in the projects right here in town.
    I would argue that Port Angeles has way too much low income housing in comparison to the number of jobs available here. It makes no sense to send low-income people to a community that has no jobs and therefore offers them no opportunity to find their way into a better life. It would be interesting to determine how Port Angeles' amount of low income housing per capita compares to that of the more affluent cities across the Puget Sound where there are jobs and opportunities.
    Why are these folks shipped here (other than to keep them out of cities where they might be able to improve their own lives). Who benefits? Obviously the owners of the old broken down "motels" benefit because they generate income from property that would otherwise be torn down. Likewise, the employers in the area benefit because the presence of these folks along with the shortage of jobs keeps wages low for the jobs that do exist.
    No, I believe that the old projects should be destroyed
    and replaced with something else. The local folks here should insist that the proportion of low income housing to population in Port Angeles should be brought into line with more affluent communities in the I-5 corridor where there are jobs and opportunities for the people who live in that low income housing.

    1. If I remember correctly, the idea was to sell each unit for say, $1, and that the houses be moved to a lot, elsewhere.

    2. Ahem, these are free standing homes and will fit into any neighborhood in town. There is nothing about them that says "projects."

  2. Sigh...

    Can't we do better than this?????
    Our community needs housing. We spend so much with Serenity House, and other groups to help the needy, and still cannot provide even the basics. Like even a place to get the absolute poor out of the rain and cold. But we can come up with almost $1 million to tear down perfectly good housing, in town.

    I know there is a mindset that it is somehow a "bad thing" to do things to help the needy. You now, that they REALLY aren't needy, but just lazy people living off the public taxpayer.

    And, it is so nice that people who view the world like that have their health, mental capacity, and resources to make those kinds of comment. But, believe it or not, there are people out there who have mental impairments. And/or a wide range of issues that have resulted in them being out on the streets.

    Yeah. I won't go on. Just sad that compassion and empathy seemed to be in such short supply.

  3. So let me get this straight.
    Because I want A. Other, wealthier communities to do their share to help economically disadvantaged people so that Port Angeles does not have to bear more than our fair share of the costs of doing so, and because B. I would like to see these folks getting a chance to improve their lives, I am devoid of empathy and compassion.
    Yeah, I certainly must have my values skewed.
    I use the term "projects" because that is how they are referred to by a friend who grew up there and who now works his butt off to support himself and his daughter on whatever he can do to live. Yes, these houses, taken individually, could fit in many Port Angeles neighborhoods. It is only in a group, and designated as subsidized housing that they become "projects".
    OK, according to Internet references it costs $12 to $16 per square foot to move a building, plus the costs of utilities and a foundation on the new lot, plus the costs of bringing them up to modern building codes. The one company near here that moved buildings has apparently moved from Carlsborg to Quilcene.
    To view these people as "lazy" and "worthless" does them a terrible injustice. To view them as "needy" people who are not capable of being anything other than objects of your pity and your charity does them an equal injustice.
    In Port Angeles there are very few real opportunities for mentally challenged people, but in many communities there are highway rest stops maintained by mentally challenged people who (at least the ones I met) were extremely proud to be able to have worthwhile employment and contribute to society rather than living off of it. Other opportunities also wait to be recognized.
    As for those who are crippled and ostracized because of substance abuse, I will invite you to research the policies in the nation of Portugal regarding those with substance abuse problems.
    Port Angeles is not a place that can offer real solutions to the problems of people without sufficient means. I do think assistance is needed in the interim and PA should provide that support. I also believe that other, wealthier cities should carry their share of that burden in proportion to their abilities to do so. To shuttle these people out to PA and stockpile them where they are either harassed or pitied and have little or no opportunity to improve the real quality of their lives is cruel and inhuman.
    Can't we do better than this?????