Friday, November 18, 2011

Family Promise of SOC president supports OC enactment of Housing Trust Fund

Testimony of Daniel F Lundy, President, Family Promise of Southern Ocean County, Inc.
 Meeting of  Board of Freeholders 
 October 18, 2011
 My name is Daniel Lundy and I am the President of Family Promise of Southern Ocean County (FPSOC), a nonprofit corporation composed of 22 religious congregations in southern Ocean County. We provide temporary shelter, meals and case management to homeless families, primarily those not on public assistance--the working poor.
Over the past two years we have provided more than 7000 bed nights of shelter and more than 20,000 meals to these folks and helped them become permanently housed and self sufficient.
Our board of trustees, representing a broad cross section of the residents of SOC, met last night and unanimously resolved that I should testify at this hearing, on behalf of homeless families. Specifically, they ask that you establish a homeless trust fund, similar to what has been done in Mercer and other counties, and enact a funding source through a $3.00 fee that would apply to every document filed in the county. I am advised that this fee would raise several hundred thousand dollars annually. 
Last year there were more than 65,000 foreclosure filings in New Jersey and over 5,000 in Ocean County. A court imposed moratorium was imposed in December to forestall such filings until irregularities and fraudulent practices by the mortgagee banks were investigated and precluded. On August 15th  of this year the six largest banks obtained court permission to resume uncontested foreclosures by demonstrating that they have taken steps to remedy this problem--improper robo-signing and other shoddy practices. In the near future therefore we can expect a flood of foreclosures.
The lack of affordable housing in our county places a severe strain on families that are forced out of their homes. It affects not only them but entire neighborhoods as forced vacancies occur.  I submit  there are few challenges that will face our county that are more significant than the threatened homelessness that now looms. 
I urge you to address this issue by establishing the housing trust and and adopting a broad range of other measures that will make affordable housing a reality in Ocean County.

(Posted 7:10 p.m.)

No comments:

Post a Comment