NEW ORLEANS – Friday, Sept. 20, 2019 – A distressing 57% of the October election candidates received a FAILING GRADE on their #PutHousingFirst Scorecard presented by the Greater New Orleans Housing Alliance (GNOHA). The scorecard consists of survey questions focusing on critical affordable housing policy proposals, such as the state housing trust fund, living wage and diversifying the availability of affordable housing funds. To view the full 2019 candidate scorecards – broken up into Statewide Races and Metro New Orleans Races click:
“The number of failing grades highlights a sad, yet predictable, lack of concern for affordable housing from far too many candidates,” said Andreanecia M. Morris, GNOHA President. “35 of the 61 candidates failed because they simply don’t care about affordable housing. This will only change with from political pressure from the voters.”
While GNOHA does not officially endorse any candidates, the #PutHousingFirst Scorecard provides clear distinctions in almost every race as to who does cares about affordable housing. While the 57% fail rate was mainly candidates who didn’t feel the need to answer the survey, GNOHA is pleased that the majority of those who did respond, received a B or higher.
“GNOHA has worked to build a voter base to ensure that elected officials no longer dodge this important issue,” Morris said. “We need them to #PutHousingFirst, and with this scorecard the voters are able to make clear choices about which candidates will actually do that.”
This is the third year and fourth election GNOHA has conducted the assessments and this year marks the largest response to date. The group launched its #PutHousingFirst campaign leading up to the 2017 election cycle in the hopes of securing 80,000 registered voters over the next years to support advocacy efforts and hold elected officials accountable in prioritizing safe, affordable, healthy housing for all in New Orleans.
The scorecard also makes recommendations on ballot initiatives that impact housing. We are SUPPORTING PROPOSITION 4 (New Orleans Property Tax Exemptions) which allows the City of New Orleans to create a tax relief program for small landlords (15 units or less) and homeowners for whom a tax increase would be too much to bear.
Leading up to the October 12 election, GNOHA once again conducted an in-depth interview process with candidates to score them on their commitment to #PutHousingFirst and support affordable housing policies in office. The week of August 12, upcoming election candidates received their surveys, with responses due back to GNOHA by Monday, August 26. Responsive candidates were then asked to participate in an in-depth interview to discuss their survey answers, and further explain their positions on the items listed in the #PutHousingFirst platform. The interview period was four weeks, ending Thursday, September 19.
Of the 61 surveys that were distributed, 26 candidates filled out the survey. 25 of those responding candidates interviewed in person with GNOHA to discuss their answers. Any candidate who did not meet in-person was disqualified from receiving anything above a “C” letter grade.
Please see the scorecards below:
Since its creation in 2007, GNOHA has sought to create change in the Greater New Orleans community through public policy advocacy and public education. The collaborative advocates for the preservation and production of affordable housing for people within the Greater New Orleans metropolitan region and places a special emphasis on the needs of the most vulnerable in society – seniors, people with disabilities, veterans, low-wage workers and low-income families.