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Controversy brewing over proposed public housing community

Posted August 13, 2008
Updated October 6, 2008

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— Plans for a housing community in downtown Raleigh took center stage at a heated meeting Wednesday evening.

A non-profit group, Community Alternatives for Supportive Abodes (CASA), wants to take over the George's Mews Apartments at the corner of Glenwood Avenue and Washington Street. Their plan calls for turning the units into affordable housing for the disabled and low-income families.

“I like the fact that it's an older neighborhood built in the '20s and '30s,” George's Mews tenant Nathan Hays said.

Hays has lived at the complex for about a year. His girlfriend, Ashley Wampler, just moved in about a month ago.

"I don't even have everything out of boxes,” she said.

The couple is concerned by CASA's plan to take over the property because they don't want to move.

They aren't alone. Many people turned up for an informal town hall meeting Wednesday evening about CASA's plan. Some residents living near the apartment complex made it clear that they don't want CASA moving in as a landlord.

“CASA's objective is to maintain this property at its current standard, at a minimal expense,” one person attending the meeting told the crowd at the meeting convened by the Historic Glenwood Brooklyn Neighborhood Association.

However, other neighbors didn’t see it as a negative move.

“I have talked to a lot of people that has CASA in their neighborhood and I have not had one person tell me they've had a problem with CASA,” Jeannine Grissom said.

However, progress could come at tenants' expense.

“I don't want to move, but I can't afford to buy a house in this neighborhood,” George's Mews tenant Jacob Sutherland said.

The City Council already signed off on its portion of the proposal that covers about $600,000. County commissioners will soon decide on their $600,000 to make this a done deal.

If the plan goes through, only people with incomes between $20,000 and $30,000 will be eligible for units at the George's Mews Apartments.

The Wake County Human Services Board/Housing and Revitalization Committee will take up the issue Thursday, Aug. 21 at 3:30 p.m.. The meeting will be held at the Waverly F. Akins Wake County office building at 337 S. Salisbury Street.


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  • whatusay Aug 15, 2008

    ctech1c2004... As a rule the poor neighborhoods have crime and killings, the ritzy neighborhoods don't.

  • ctechic2004 Aug 15, 2008

    whatusay-So does that also stand for the ritzy neighborhoods that have drug addicts and dealers living there? As I said before, who do you think finance the drugs that is being brought into the neighborhoods? Where do you think is buying the drugs? Answer: the upper class residents in North Raleigh and other upscale neighborhoods. But that doesn't make all who live in those areas drug users, just like it doesn't make everyone in low-income neighborhoods unemployed and waiting on a handout.

  • whatusay Aug 15, 2008

    ctechic2004....it only takes one or two gun carrying drug addict, drug dealers to make the entire complex a drug haven and a dangerous place to live. But, all the residents are exposed to the atmosphere that surrounds low cost public housing, and that is drugs, crime, violence, noise..

  • ctechic2004 Aug 15, 2008

    The Admiral-Your point is well taken. But my point is that Not All who are on Section 8 or live in subsidized housing are drug dealers or gun toting thugs. Just like all who live in North Raleigh or MacGregor Downs are not wealthy. Some are living above their means and are receiving government assistance.

  • TheAdmiral Aug 15, 2008

    "To those who believes the myth that all Section 8 or Housing recepients are gun toting, drug dealing, murdering thugs are totally off base."

    Not really - I stated my reference of living in Section 8 housing and know that none of the drug income is reported, so they are 100% eligible for Section 8 assistance.

    I woke up one morning and found a brand new Lexus shot up with 50 caliber shots, sitting no more than 100 feet from a Police Station Satellite office.

  • ctechic2004 Aug 15, 2008

    To those who believes the myth that all Section 8 or Housing recepients are gun toting, drug dealing, murdering thugs are totally off base. Yes there are some who live that type of life style, but there are also those who lives in the richy rich neighborhoods who are also doing the same things. There are more cocaine sniffing, crack smoking people in those neighborhoods than there are in SE Raleigh. The news media and police just don't advertise that fact. Where do you think the dealers get the money to move drugs from State to State-White Corporate America.

    I wonder what would happen if these holier than thou people who seems to enjoy degrading people because of their economic status lost their jobs or was permanently disabled because of illness or an accident? You never know when the tables are turned and you may need that same assistance. So many of you need to stop being so judgmental unless you know the circumstances of everyone's life.

  • tweathe850 Aug 15, 2008

    CASA equals home in.....spanish.

  • sweetsea Aug 14, 2008

    Elect a liberal city council and mayor and this is the result.

  • Tidbit Aug 14, 2008

    if it is for low income families - why only 20,000 to 30,000. 30,000 is actually pretty fair if it is just 1 or 2 adults.

    Isn't this being descriminatory towards low income families making less than 20,000?

  • Tidbit Aug 14, 2008

    If the plan goes through, only people with incomes between $20,000 and $30,000 will be eligible for units at the Georges Mews Apartments.

    Why isn't this descrimination?

    You can't have apartments for adults with no kids because that's descriminatory against people who have kids. You can't have apartments for disabled only because that descriminates against non-disabled.

    Seems very descriminatory to me