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Rubio Introduces Legislation to Improve Federal Housing Inspections, Hold Slumlords Accountable

Apr 11, 2019 | Press Releases

Washington, D.C. — Today, U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) reintroduced the HUD Inspection Process and Enforcement Reform Act of 2019, legislation that seeks to improve the federal housing inspection process, hold slumlords accountable for misusing taxpayer dollars and ensure they are not endangering the health and safety of tenants. This legislation stems from previous investigations into the Global Ministries Foundation (GMF).
“Low income housing residents have suffered at the hands of slumlords like Global Ministries Foundation who were able to get away with their despicable scheme in part because of HUD’s lax oversight,” said Rubio. “This legislation will protect vulnerable residents from these despicable slumlords and hold HUD accountable for the deplorable living conditions that too many Floridians have had to face.”  
Specifically, the HUD Inspection Process and Enforcement Reform Act of 2019 allows the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to remove certain HUD employees from civil service or reduce the grade or pay for misconduct or performance. HUD employees may challenge removal or reduction in grade or pay by filing an appeal with the Merit Systems Protection Board. The bill also protects whistleblowers who report misconduct to the Office of Special Counsel (OSC).
The bill also allows the Secretary of HUD to better enforce safe and sanitary standards in federal housing and requires HUD to publish housing reports that detail inspection scores of facilities, as well as actions taken to protect the health and safety of affected tenants. The Secretary would have the ability to impose civil monetary penalties, transfer ownership away from slumlords, and prohibit them from other federal programs.
To see a full timeline of Rubio’s efforts to protect low income housing tenants click here.