Townhall addresses need for housing and actions taken by Onondaga County

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — There was standing room only at the Westcott Community Center to talk about one of the greatest challenges facing us today.

“I worry because of all the changes in our neighborhood to accommodate luxury apartments,” said Syracuse resident Ann Wagner. “But for poor people here we don’t have any housing for them.”

Onondaga County lawmaker Maurice Brown organized the forum held on March 19.

“It is not profitable for any developer to develop low-income housing,” he said. “It is not profitable for them to develop affordable housing. I think the role of government is to make that possible.”

Brown says with only 40% of renters in Onondaga county are able to afford quality housing, and the county is partnering with home headquarters to create new, affordable homes.

“Renting is available in the city. Quality rentals are less abundant,” he said. “But folks want homeownership. Home ownership allows you to build equity, it allows you grow yourself as a person. I am all on board for that.”

It’s step one for this brand-new county lawmaker in his effort to try and help with this housing emergency here.

To submit questions or comments email him,, subject line “Town Hall.”

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