CMHA votes to scatter public housing across Green Twp

GREEN TOWNSHIP, OH (FOX19) - The withstanding debate over where to build required public housing in Green Township may have come to a halt.

Cincinnati Metropolitan Housing Authority (CMHA) Commissioners voted unanimously on Tuesday for 'Option B', which would spread 32 public housing units across Green Township.

CMHA is required by law to build the 32 units, and were between two options:

Option A - Place all units in a new multi-family housing development on a piece of land at North Bend Road and Westwood-Northern Boulevard, estimated at $6.6 million.

Option B - Buy and rehab enough buildings throughout the township to create the 32 units required, estimated at $3 million.

On Monday, Green Township trustees voted on a resolution against Option A and not sell the land on Westwood Northern Boulevard to CMHA. They also recommended scattering the 32 units across the township (Option B).

CMHA Commissioners voted within the first five minutes of Tuesday's meeting. Several Green Township residents were in attendance to hear which option CMHA would implement.

Applause rang out after the unanimous vote, but while the vote was quick, it was not enough to silence the Green Township residents' concerns.

"What took them so long? This was an obvious answer," said Mary Kuhl, Westwood resident in Green County. "This should have never even been on the radar screen. This shouldn't have been something that any reasonable person considered. So, I think it took them four weeks of getting slapped around and publicly humiliated. What took them so long?"

Dozens of Green Township residents attended Tuesday's meeting to hear in person what the commission would decide.

"I'm excited about the option B," added Julianna Johns, also a Westwood neighborhood resident. "I think that makes better sense with what H.U.D. is proposing to do for future residents as well as the current residents."

While residents are considering the vote for option B another victory, many feel the real fight has just begun.

"I'm happy we've won these couple battles, but the fight's not over with now," Kuhl added.

The main concern is holding CMHA accountable. Scattered site housing is loosely defined.

"They indicated that scattered housing sites could mean 2,4,6,8, or even 16 unit facilities," explained Dave Lopez, representative for the Monfort Heights neighborhood. "And what we really are pressing for, both for the people who live in those facilities and for the township, is that they be as small and as scattered as possible."

"I want more information," Johns added. "I want them to be as transparent as they've promised to be and they have been so far."

"We're thrilled, but we're moving forward," Kuhl said. "We've got them on the mat and we're going to keep choking."

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