Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Corporate slumlord benefiting from federal stimulus tax credits

California Watch, a project of the Center for Investigative Reporting, has uncovered the story of large corporations working in California reaping tens of millions of dollars in new federal stimulus funds, despite previous pollution violations, criminal probes, and allegations of fraud.

The story by Will Evans has been picked up in several media outlets including the Contra Costa Times, the OC Register, and the San Francisco Chronicle.

Tenants and advocates in San Francisco were surprised to hear that Denver-based corporate landlord, AIMCO was the beneficiary of some $13 million in stimulus tax credits to rehabilitate its housing complex in Los Angeles. As the article states:
"This federal assistance comes after the company paid $3 million in 2004 to settle a lawsuit from the city of San Francisco over complaints that it operated mold and rodent-infested buildings that posed serious safety hazards. Residents continue to complain about AIMCO’s management."
Tenants in San Francisco's Bayview neighborhood, "have complained for years of slumlord conditions and bad management at the AIMCO apartment complexes."

An AIMCO resident Dorthy Peterson said, "
If they really wanted to make sure that low income housing was built properly and for residents that were going to be treated like human beings, then they would not give it to an AIMCO."

And Sara Shortt, the executive director of Tenants Together member organization, Housing Rights Committee of San Francisco said tenants and advocates trust AIMCO, "as far as we can throw them."

Read the full article at CaliforniaWatch.org.

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