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Nearly one-third of Cherry Tree Crossing families have moved out of complex

Sunday, Nov. 10, 2013 10:57 PM
Last updated Monday, Nov. 11, 2013 12:45 AM
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Nearly one-third of Cherry Tree Crossing families have vacated the public housing project as the Augusta Housing Authority finishes its required notification period and mandatory move-outs begin.

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Delores Brown (middle) sits with her daughters Destiny (left), 12, and Miya, 15, at their Cherry Tree Crossing apartment. Like a majority of the families at the complex, the Browns have chosen to take a Section 8 voucher.  MICHAEL HOLAHAN/STAFF
MICHAEL HOLAHAN/STAFF
Delores Brown (middle) sits with her daughters Destiny (left), 12, and Miya, 15, at their Cherry Tree Crossing apartment. Like a majority of the families at the complex, the Browns have chosen to take a Section 8 voucher.

As of Friday, 102 families had moved and 253 families remained at Cherry Tree Crossing. Director of Resident Services Buddy Oldfield said the numbers change daily, and those who have already moved did so voluntarily.

On Aug. 5, the housing authority received final approval from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to demolish the complex on 15th Street. Tenants were given a 90-day notice before they could begin relocations, although residents could waive their rights to the waiting period before the three-month mark, which passed Thursday.

A modern, mixed-income apartment complex will be built in Cherry Tree’s place using tax credits.

The housing authority will continue to work one-on-one with residents to find replacement housing for them, Oldfield said. He hopes to have Cherry Tree empty by June.

A majority of families have chosen to take Section 8 vouchers to use on rental houses or apartments. Others asked the housing authority to relocate them to another housing project.

So far, 65 families with vouchers have moved and 21 moved to public housing. The remaining 16 moved on their own, were evicted, left the public housing program or died, Oldfield said.

Another 147 families have received vouchers and are trying to find places to use them, waiting on a required inspection or are moving. Twenty-seven families are moving to public housing.

“Over the next several months, we will slowly continue to move people from public housing to public housing,” Oldfield said. “People with vouchers will continue to make their moves.”

Delores Brown and her four children are waiting to move into a new house using a Section 8 voucher. The family’s belongings have been packed in boxes for weeks, anticipating the move from their home of 11 years.

“I’m happy to be leaving,” Brown said. “I never wanted this to be my permanent or my last stop.”

Brown planned to move into the new house over the weekend, but the house failed a required inspection because the gas was not turned on. It’s not clear when a second inspection will occur, although it could happen this week, she said.

The housing authority only has a few inspectors to inspect all the Section 8 houses or apartments, Oldfield said. They have been scheduled several weeks out, he said.

Oldfield said finding public housing units with the appropriate number of bedrooms will take the longest time. Families that qualify for one bedroom cannot move into a larger unit, he said.

Some elderly residents have resisted moving to high-rise apartments operated by the housing authority, Oldfield said. As one-bedroom units open at other complexes, he is trying to keep them open for Cherry Tree residents.

“I’m trying to accommodate everyone as best as I possibly can,” Oldfield said.

Beginning next week, the housing authority will contact about 40 families that have not verified whether they will move to public housing or use a Section 8 voucher, Oldfield said. They need to begin the process, he added.

“I don’t want anybody to fall through the cracks,” he said.

At Cherry Tree, discarded mattresses, sofas and other furniture are piled high in dumpsters. The windows and doors of several dozen units are boarded up, which the housing authority did when each unit was vacated.

Oldfield said Richmond County Sheriff’s Office deputies have been alerted to watch for people breaking into and trying to live in the vacant units.

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soapy_725
43678
Points
soapy_725 11/11/13 - 08:03 am
1
0
A culture of dependence, crime and violence coming to your
Unpublished

neighborhood. And it will not be a "wonderful day in the neighborhood" for Mr. Rogers or anyone else. And it is about culture, not race.

RoadkiII
6596
Points
RoadkiII 11/11/13 - 08:19 am
9
2
Can I get a Section 8

Can I get a Section 8 voucher?... silly me, I work for a living.

just an opinion
2638
Points
just an opinion 11/11/13 - 09:05 am
11
1
I've decided....

They are smarter than us. Did you know that a section 8 voucher is a lifetime entitlement. Lifetime! Now that will give you incentive to go out and take care of yourself, want it?

seenitB4
87395
Points
seenitB4 11/11/13 - 09:37 am
7
0
Lifetime?

Wow..I didn't know that....what a joke on the taxpayers of this country....we need to change some things but it will take backbone to do it..

JRC2024
8885
Points
JRC2024 11/11/13 - 10:01 am
6
1
Look at those smiles. They

Look at those smiles. They have got over on the taxpayer again. 11 more years I guess or until she is no longer here. People that live on the taxpayer should be ashamed of themselves but I remember when those places were built and the type of people who lived there. Nothing has changed except that they get more from the taxpayer.

Bulldog
1327
Points
Bulldog 11/11/13 - 10:38 am
7
0
New Plan

Until we, as a society, develop a plan to house and support the millions of generational welfare dependents, in a self sustaining way, we will forever be cursed by our lack of courage in dealing with this issue. Requiring work for support will go along way towards reversing the march of entitlement. But then that might require some courage... Like medicine that helps a child, sometimes the process can be bitter, but a good parent does what has to be done in order to save the child.

Riverman1
84130
Points
Riverman1 11/11/13 - 11:48 am
5
2
Moving on up. Section 8

Moving on up. Section 8 housing is a step up from public housing. The years of hard work have paid off and now they have something they can be proud of.

dichotomy
33043
Points
dichotomy 11/11/13 - 02:27 pm
9
2
Well we're movin' on up, To

Well we're movin' on up,
To the SOUTH side.
To a deluxe rental off 25.
Movin' on up,
To the SOUTH side.
Taxpayers are servin' up the pie.

SNAP fish frying in the kitchen;
SNAP beans cookin' on the grill.
Took a whole lotta tryin',
Just to get up that hill.
Now we got a voucher for the big leagues,
Givermint puttin' more in the hat.
As long as we live, we on the taxpayers baby,
There ain't nothin wrong with that.

Tots
25940
Points
Tots 11/11/13 - 05:00 pm
7
1
Section 8 Neighbors,

are starting to take over this little old neighborhood...We have never had so many kids walking the streets at all hours as we do now... Thanks-NOT!!!!!!!!!

LLArms
470
Points
LLArms 11/11/13 - 05:14 pm
6
1
I would suggest those of you

I would suggest those of you with HoA's in your neighborhood attend the next meeting and verify that the covenants do not allow landlords to rent out to Section 8 tenants.

KSL
130010
Points
KSL 11/11/13 - 10:39 pm
3
2
There needs to be a time

There needs to be a time limit on helping people who have hit a rough sopt, especially if it is self-imposed. 2 and 3 generations of people living on the taxpayers is unexceptable.

So much more money has been spent on public education than when I came along.

Jimmy Carter was well-intentioned, unlike our current pres. But he turned education over to bureaucrats was after he got his third son out of private school post desegregation. Other 2 sons went to public school.

Don't get me started on the lying by omission he did after the third song graduated from Woodward Academy prior to his election of governor of Georgia.

Little Lamb
46054
Points
Little Lamb 11/11/13 - 11:12 pm
1
0
Proud

Okay, RM. You know we are usually on the same track, but I must confess I do not understand where you are coming from with this post:

Moving on up. Section 8 housing is a step up from public housing. The years of hard work have paid off and now they have something they can be proud of.

In the first place, Section 8 housing is not necessarily a step up from public housing. Some public housing facilities are great; and some are terrible. Some Section 8 rentals are great; and some are terrible.

You do know that Section 8 vouchers are for rentals only, don't you, RM? That being the case, what is it you mean by “. . . years of hard work have paid off and now they have something they can be proud of. . .”? You get a Section 8 voucher for taxpayers to subsidize your rent to a landlord. There is nothing to be proud of about that. And you don't have to work to get the vouchers.

JRC2024
8885
Points
JRC2024 11/11/13 - 11:33 pm
2
0
LL, He was being sarcastic

LL, He was being sarcastic and I think making it like the song on The Jefferson's TV program. Movin on up to the east side. By the way, Austin Rhodes mentioned your name on his program today and his inference was that the posters were not too bright. Imagine him saying that.

KSL
130010
Points
KSL 11/12/13 - 12:19 am
0
1
Unless I am reading him

Unless I am reading him wrong, this was the sarcastic Riverman.

I am just befuddled about which one I met!!!

KSL
130010
Points
KSL 11/12/13 - 12:23 am
0
1
I met or saw on several

I met or saw on several occasions. All about the same shift.

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