COLORADO SPRINGS – The government shutdown was unnerving to more than just furloughed employees.
“I know one gentleman in particular who was probably going to start ‘freaking out’–to use a coloquialism–about whether he was going to get kicked out,” said Greccio Housing tenant and board member Thea Platt.
More than 10% of Greccio Housing’s 1,100+ tenants rely on Housing Urban Development grants to pay the rent–which, because of the government shutdown–would only be covered through the end of February.
“If you’ve got any kind of a heart, it’s hard to watch people hurting,” Platt told News5.
Platt fell on hard times back in 2011, and had to turn to government assistance. She says it’s been tough watching her neighbors struggle with the uncertainty of the shutdown.
“I will be very relieved. It will relieve a certain amount of stress that’s just ‘background.'”
She suddenly stopped and looked at the computer, streaming President Trump’s special report.
Moments later, President Trump announced a deal to temporarily reopen the government.
“Very good,” she said with a smile on her face.
Greccio Housing is prepared, though, if the government shuts down again.
This week, board members voted to use reserve funds–if necessary–to cover rent for furloughed employees and HUD grant recipients.
The rent would have to be paid back once the government reopened.
“It just adds to the sense of stability in people’s homes, when people are already on edge and on alert for something that may threaten their stability,” said Greccio Housing Executive Director Lee Patke.
“Something like the government shutdown is a daily anxiety.”
Hopefully, the temporary reprieve from the shutdown will remain permanent and we’ll have a good budget moving forward,”he concluded.