Senator Wayne Langerholc announced on social media Tuesday that he plans to introduce new legislation that would reform the state’s policies on public housing.
Langerholc says the legislation would include the creation of a “Public Housing Safety Committee” within each individual Public Housing Authority.
He says the committee’s job would be to “properly vet and deny admissions to individuals with a recent criminal record if they present a threat to the health and safety of the community.”
In October, local lawmakers held a public hearing to discuss several issues surrounding public housing in Johnstown, including the claim that the majority of crime and drug-related issues can be directly traced to Johnstown’s housing projects.
Last month, Johnstown’s housing projects was once again in the spotlight after an investigation by NBC 10 in Philadelphia uncovered a “loophole” that allows people to bypass Philadelphia’s housing waiting list by moving to Section 8 housing in Johnstown first.
“We want to have a welcoming community here in Johnstown for anybody that wants to work here, wants to live here, and wants to raise their family here, but we must make certain that we are not attracting the wrong type of individuals to our area. This legislation uses the very few tools that the Federal Government has given the states in regard to public housing to ensure our communities are safe for all of our residents.”