There has been much talk recently about the Affordable Housing Plan and the ordinance adopted by the city.
In 2002, the New Mexico Legislature passed Constitutional Amendment 6. This amendment allows counties and municipalities to donate land, existing buildings, infrastructure, etc. to the development of affordable housing. This allowed the city of Clovis to donate to the Hotel Clovis project. The Affordable Housing Plan was a just another step in this process.
There was a sign on 21st Street that says, “Hotel Clovis is HUD Housing.” What is so wrong with “HUD” housing and affordable housing? The Clovis Hotel Project is not a “HUD” project, it is an affordable housing project utilizing tax credits and private financing. Remember that many of the individuals who work minimum wage jobs, the elderly living on social security, and those living on disability income all qualify to live in affordable housing. Do they not have the right to live in decent, safe and affordable housing? We believe it is unfair to label low-income housing, affordable housing, or HUD housing, in a negative way.
It is difficult to pull all the funding together to develop these projects, and any kind of donation by a city or municipality would have made the development of the projects much easier. We worked in the housing industry in Clovis for about 17 years and have developed more than $18 million in affordable housing throughout eastern New Mexico.
These projects provided needed housing to many families, and continue to contribute enormously to the tax coffers of their respective counties, with Curry County being the largest recipient.
The Hotel Clovis project is important to our community. As private citizens of Clovis, we strongly support the Affordable Housing Plan and this developer's efforts regarding the Hotel Clovis.
Kathy Mercer and Sandra Hidalgo
Government not required to provide housing
In response to Carl and Mona Lee Armstrong’s letter in Sunday’s CNJ:
Yes, the city of Clovis has a plan for the Hotel Clovis. However, inevitably, the balance of the project will come from us, the taxpayers. Us being the people who make our own house payment.
We will end up paying for the maintenance of this project when it becomes dilapidated from the low-income residents who, as a general rule, don’t take care of that that is not theirs and, as history has shown many times over, these projects almost always end up as just that — “The projects.”
I do not believe we need to build a projects in the heart of this city.
Furthermore, the comments about the government needing to provide “safe and attractive living environments for the citizens” is partially correct. The government needs to regulate safety and infrastructure issues. However, the government does not and is not required to provide a $200,000 house for its citizens who cannot or will not provide for themselves.
I work hard every day. I pay my bills and my taxes, but I do not live in a $200,000 house.
As for those “minorities,” they are in fact the handful of citizens trying to ensure the commissioners do what is best for this city. They are getting involved. It is their right as citizens of this city and this nation — a right I spent 21 years in the military defending, and what our military fights for daily.
How dare anyone belittle them for doing a job that is their God-given right.
Our commissioners are human and fallible. They are also elected representatives by the populous, and the populous are seeing a trend they do not believe to be in the best interest of this city.