After budget cuts end rent subsidies, former homeless fear return to shelters

A formerly homeless couple says their landlord is trying to kick them out of their Corona studio in an effort to renovate the building and raise the rent, the New York Daily News reported.

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The renters of a studio at 38-01 112th Street had been paying just $100 a month thanks to a subsidy from the city’s Department of Homeless Services Advantage program. But budget cuts ended that program in November 2010 and the pair have paid $983.62 for rent and utilities on time every month. Still, they say the landlord and superintendent contact them several times a week to find out when the renters plan to move out. The couple worry that once landlord CI House gets its way, the pair will be forced back into homeless shelter.

The Daily News said this is not an unusual predicament for former beneficiaries of the now defunct program. In fact, a third of families in that program, which distributed about $700 to $1,000 for low-income New Yorkers each month, have returned to shelters since the subsidy ended. As a result, according to the Coalition for the Homeless, which estimates the cost of sheltering a family at $3,000 per month, the budget cut is actually costing the city money. [NYDN]