August 12, 2016 Radio Commentary

Mosque Zoned-In, Other Religions Zoned-Out

Radio Commentary, 90.7, 91.7 New Life FM, August 12, 2016 – By Sue Ella Deadwyler

Acting under new regulations, the Housing and Urban Development Agency has begun its strategy to over-turn the right of states and local government to zone property according to community standards. This is what’s happening.

Last month, the federal Department of Justice filed suit against a tiny 21-square-mile township, where 60,000 residents live “out in the country,” just northeast of Philadelphia. The town was originally named Salem, meaning “peace,” but in 1701 Ben, which means “son,” was added to honor William Penn. So, Bensalem – “son of peace” – is in trouble with the federal government, because local officials refused to adjust the local zoning code to allow a mosque to be built in town.

This is the story in a nutshell. In 2014 Muslims who were meeting in a local firehouse, applied to build a mosque next to township property. After six meetings their application was denied, but last month on July 21st, the Department of Justice filed suit in District Court to force Bensalem officials to grant a permit for the mosque.

A similar problem arose in Bloomington, Minnesota, where residents filed a formal complaint with the city council on July 25th, claiming city officials gave special privileges for a mosque to have exclusive use of Smith Park. Therefore, a group of residents, identified as “Friends of Smith Park,” complained that “you’ve privileged [members of the mosque] above all other religions. You’ve made Smith Park a [mosque-only] zone after the park is already closed, excluding citizens of all other faiths and those of no faith.” Continue reading

July 29, 2016 Radio Commentary

Social-Engineering Neighborhoods

Radio Commentary, 90.7, 91.7 New Life FM, July 29, 2016 – By Sue Ella Deadwyler

In the U.S. Senate several weeks ago, Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah) introduced an amendment to stop another massive federal power-grab. His amendment would have de-funded the new housing rule that authorizes federal bureaucrats to dictate where low-income residents live.

When Congress passed the “Affirmatively Further Fair Housing (AFFH)” regulation, HUD received power to overrule local zoning ordinances concerning housing, and conduct local surveys nation-wide to locate and move welfare recipients into any city, town, zip code, or neighborhood HUD deems not diversified enough.

Of course, the plan is unconstitutional. It interferes with local control, and, under the auspices of the federal executive branch, makes the Housing and Urban Development agency a National Zoning Board with power to rezone any community anywhere along income and racial lines, with no regard for the wishes of local residents.

Although regionalism is unconstitutional, the plan deliberately ignores state boundaries in favor of regions. Case in point is Dubuque, Iowa that was coerced into recruiting welfare recipients from Chicago, Illinois to live in Dubuque’s tax-subsidized low-income housing. Continue reading

June 2016 Newsletter

377-Page Rule Put HUD1 on Steroids
Q. Should a 41-year-old federal appointee
have power to decide who lives where

“This new regulation is designed to give unelected, anonymous bureaucrats in Washington the power to pick and choose who your new next-door neighbor will be. If they don’t believe your neighborhood is ‘diverse’ enough, they will seize control of local zoning decisions – choosing what should be built, where, and who should pay for it – in order to make your neighborhood look more like they want it to.”
–U. S. Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah)

U.S. Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah) offered an amendment to defund an unconstitutional power-grab that allows the Department of Housing and Urban Development to become a National Zoning Board with authority to rewrite local zoning laws and land-use regulations in every city and town, and transform demographics of state legislative and congressional districts. Senator Lee’s amendment was tabled by a vote of 60 – 37. Georgia Senator Johnny Isakson was one of 162 Republican senators who voted NO. Those NO-votes kept the President’s plan alive.

The new rule authorizes HUD to re-engineer the composition of neighborhoods by race, ethnicity, and class. That means HUD could move low-income families into single-family neighborhoods or disperse low-income housing developments into any community anywhere, regardless of local zoning ordinances, actions of elected local officials, or community desires. Unless the plan is stopped, HUD will re-zone all U.S. neighborhoods to comply with federal government specifications developed and enforced by the executive branch of government.

It can be stopped! Senator Lee says the Affirmatively Further Fair Housing (AFFH) plan can be easily thwarted, IF local governments, simply, refuse to take federal grants. Local officials who accept AFFH grants must agree to relinquish their power to control zoning policies. Meaning, the plan is contingent on successfully bribing local officials into compliance.

Senator Lee explained how AFFH works. Cities and towns must audit their local housing policies under close supervision of HUD regulators. Communities that fail to meet HUD’s new definition of “fair housing” must submit a community reorganization plan to comply with HUD.

Not only will HUD direct local governments and public housing authorities to make specific changes to zoning policies, HUD will require local officials to adopt HUD’s preferred housing policies or lose their traditional Community Development Block Grant for community needs.

Current Status. The U.S. House passed Rep. Paul Gosar’s (R-AZ) amendment to defund AFFH and attached it to the FY 2016 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Act. Now the Senate must do likewise and pass Senator Lee’s amendment that was tabled in May. All senators in footnote 2 must be asked to vote YES.

ACTION – Call Senator Johnny Isakson, 1-877-762-8762 or 770-661-0999, and ask him to support Lee’s amendment.

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