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TDN's front page described the Longview Housing Agency as being swamped by applicants for Section 8 housing vouchers, a rent subsidy program. Their old procedure created long-term waiting lists so the assistance goes to local needy residents because out-of-towners wouldn't stay updated on the list. With the new swamp of applicants, out-of-towners can sign up and use a friend's local address, getting them close to getting subsidized rent here. I am sure the objective of the City of Longview when the agency was set up was to help local needy residents, not to attract more needy residents.

Longview Housing Authority said about 15 vouchers come available monthly. What they don't say is how many of those go to preferred applicants like a young mother who is living with her parents because she is considered homeless. Their rules allow preferred applicants to be moved ahead of people who have been on the list for years.

Vouchers should be given to long-term local needy residents first.

Bill Hallanger


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