Mayor Turner says some minority neighborhoods unfairly treated by Harvey rebuilding program
HOUSTON - Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner claims some minority neighborhoods are being unfairly treated by a Hurricane Harvey rebuilding program.
On the heels of Harvey's four-year anniversary, some Houston residents like Isidoro Gonzalez are still waiting to get their homes fixed.
"All the sheetrock went bad. All the carpet went bad. A lot of the furniture, 80% of my furniture I had to throw it out. I’ve been trying to remodel from then but ever since they approved me to be with the Harvey program, they made me sign a piece of paper saying that I would no longer work on my house, or it would disqualify me, even though I had already done 80% of the electrical," Gonzalez said.
"All these residents deserve better. These neighborhoods deserve better," said Turner.
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During a news conference Monday, Turner named Pleasantville, Sagemont and Studewood as three mostly-minority neighborhoods that he says have not been treated fairly by the Texas General Land Office and its post-Harvey home rebuilding program.
"For example, the GLO has refused to ensure thousands of families receive at least a 3-bedroom home if they own at least a 3 bedroom home prior to Harvey. I don’t think it’s unreasonable to ask that they get back what they had, because it, in turn, diminishes the value of their home, and in turn, the value of their community," Turner said.
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When asked, Turner said he has no explanation for why this unfair treatment is happening.
Turner said he’ll ensure the GLO will abide by the Fair Housing Act moving forward.